ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steelmaker, has announced that it will be taking additional steps to adjust its European production levels in order to align production with current weak market demand.

With this in mind, the company intends to reduce primary steelmaking production at facilities in Dunkirk, France and Eisenhüttenstadt in Germany. In Q4 of this year it will reduce production at its plant in Bremen, Germany, to tie in with a planned blast furnace stoppage, which will be extended. Similarly, plans are afoot to extend the stoppage time for blast furnace repairs at the company’s Asturias facility in Spain.

Geert van Poelvoorde, CEO, ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products, commented: “This is again a hard decision for us to have taken, but given the level of weakness in the market, we feel it is the prudent course of action. This will be a temporary measure that will be reversed when market conditions improve. In the meantime, our employees remain our utmost priority and we are doing everything we can to ensure that the right social measures are in place to support them and their families during this difficult time.”

ArcelorMittal has already announced its intention to temporarily idle production in Kraków, Poland and reduce production in Asturias, Spain. The announcement, on 6 May, also impacted the planned increase of shipments at ArcelorMittal Italia to a 6Mt annual run-rate; the planned increase will be slowed down following a decision to optimise cost and quality over volume in the current environment.