ArcelorMittal considers idling of slab plant

It is being reported that ArcelorMittal is “considering a temporary idling of certain steel production operations,” specifically in its Lazaro Cardenas slab plant which is located in Michoacan state, Western Mexico.

A company spokesperson has said, “We are still in discussions with various stakeholders and no official decision has been made. Any idling decision will not impact our ability to meet customer demand. We will provide further updates when they are available.”

Michoacan is Mexico’s largest steel producer and slab exporter, with slab capacity of 3.8 million tons/year. It has also been reported by the local media, El Diario, that the slab plant could start an indefinite technical stoppage from March 27, in an attempt to put pressure on Mexico’s federal government to do more to limit the large volumes of steel entering Mexico from other countries.

ArcelorMittal describes Lazaro Cardenas as the only dedicated slab producer in the world using direct reduced iron (DRI) produced on-site, in its electric arc furnaces (EAFs) for continuous slab casting. The works includes a pelletizer plant with annual capacity of 4mt, a 2.3m tons/year HYL DRI plant, a 1.5m t/y DRI Midrex plant, four 220t EAFs, capable of producing 5.3m t/y of liquid steel, two 220t ladle furnaces, vacuum degassing, two twin-strand continuous slab casters and a thermal power station.

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