ArcelorMittal announced that it had decided to close its furnace and steelworks in Krakow, Poland, due to the difficult operating environment and insufficient protection from imports from outside the EU, DPA reports.
”The process of closing the blast furnace and steelworks will begin in October and will take several weeks until the assets are permanently shut down,” the company said, not expecting a rapid return in steel demand.
”The EU steel sector has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19), with all sectors using steel reducing their activity,” ArcelorMittal said, justifying the shutdown at the Krakow unit.
The company also blamed higher energy prices in Poland and the recent EU decision ”to increase the share of duty-free steel imports from outside the EU bloc, at a time when steel demand in Europe it has dropped dramatically.”
In an attempt to improve its competitiveness, ArcelorMittal will now focus on operations at the Dabrowa Gornicza plant, which has two blast furnaces. The Krakow coking plant will continue to operate.