Tata Steel Mothballs South Wales Mill
The closure of the mill at Llanwern site in Newport, south Wales, resulted in 115 job losses. Tata Steel runs a similar mill in Port Talbot with lower costs and said this will supply the market. The company had already cut production capacity from 85–90 % in the first half this year to 80–85 % in October, it said. In September, Tata Steel’s European unit, Corus, shut down 1 of 4 blast furnaces in Scunthorpe and another furnace at the site was idled a few years ago on a long-term basis. Other steelmakers in Europe have made cutbacks to deal with flagging demand. Germany’s biggest steelmaker ThyssenKrupp said it would idle a blast furnace in Duisburg/DE, to carry out planned maintenance earlier than expected as customers ordered few flat steel products. Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal has closed 2 furnaces at its Liege plant in Belgium and idled production in Germany, Poland and Spain because of flagging demand and Europe’s poor economic outlook. Tata Steel Europe is the continent’s second-biggest steel producer with a capacity of 18 Mt/a (12/2011).