ArcelorMittal has announced that it has furloughed 250 employees at its plant in Cleveland, Ohio, USA. The company says that its customers – largely in the automotive and construction industries – have closed down plants due to the corona virus and that this has affected work at the plant. The furloughs are not expected to last more than six months, according to an online report.

The world’s biggest steelmaker has also announced that it will be idling production at its Hibbing Taconite iron ore mine and pellet processing plant in Minnesota from 3 May through 6 July.

Other Minnesota mines owned by Cleveland-Cliffs (Northshore Mining in Babbit and Silver Bay) and US Steel (Keetac) are also idling production, bringing total lay-offs to 1,495.

ArcelorMittal believes it will see a significant decline in industrial activity in many markets throughout the world and plans to reduce production and idle steelmaking in accordance with the situation on a country-by-country basis.