[ferro-alloys.com]The world's largest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal, is reducing production and temporary idling steelmaking and finishing assets on a country-by-country basis in alignment with regional demand as well as government requirements, it said Tuesday
The company has also decided to postpone its annual general meeting planned for May 5, with a new date to be communicated in due course.
In an earlier statement issued on March 19, ArcelorMittal said it was either seeing or expected to see a significant decline in industrial activity in many of its markets around the world due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In its latest statement, the company did not say how much steel capacity it has cut so far, nor how much it will cut in the coming weeks.
"This will not necessarily happen uniformly at assets across the globe given the escalation of the virus is at different points in different regions," ArcelorMittal said in the statement. "While Europe is currently the epicenter, according to official WHO data, cases in the NAFTA region have now exceeded those in China, with cases also increasing in Africa, India, South America and the CIS."
"Where demand for our products continues, for example for food packaging, we will endeavour to maintain reduced operations to ensure we can meet customer's requirements," it said.
ArcelorMittal also said it is contributing to help address the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic with its R&D team. The company in particular is developing a 3D printed ventilator prototype. This will be tested imminently in hospitals and, if successful, will massively increase the ability to rapidly produce ventilators. ArcelorMittal is also offering space to medical facilities to host additional wards.
(S&P Global Platts)