Dow Jones Newswires reported that ArcelorMittal plans in October to restart a blast furnace at its Tubarao steel mill in southeast Brazil that has been out of production since the global economic crisis.
Mr Benjamin Baptista Filho CEO of ArcelorMittal Brasil said in an interview late Friday. That “The 1.2 million tonnes a year No 2 blast furnace will be restarted not in response to growing demand from Brazilian or global steel markets but because Tubarao's major No 1 blast furnace, with 3 million tonnes a year capacity, will be taken out of production in April 2012 for 90 days for a revamp.”
He said that this is the first time the furnace will be halted since it started up 29 years ago.
Mr Baptista said the No 1 blast furnace reline will cost USD 180 million and it isn't yet clear at what level of capacity the Tubarao works will be producing after the reline.
ArcelorMittal's Tubarao works, with crude steel production capacity of 7.5 million tonnes a year, is Brazil's largest single steel mill. Output was slashed at the works in Espirito Santo state in early 2009 as demand for steel slumped in Brazil and on international markets.