Russian steelmaker OJSC Magnitogorsk (MMK) has announced that in H1 2015 it increased metal shipments to the automotive industry by 20% year-on-year to 215kt and has strengthened its position despite a significant decline in Russia’s car manufacturing sector.

According to MMK, shipments of its products increased within the process of acceptance (approval) of the company’s automotive sheet by leading global automotive corporations with assembly plants in Russia.

During H1 2015, MMK supplied 6.1kt of metal to global automotive manufacturers with plants located in Russia, compared to just 215 tonnes during the same period in 2014. In essence the company shifted from pilot shipments to industrial shipments, according to Pavel Shilyaev, MMK’s CEO.

MMK is strengthening its position on the automotive market and expanding shipments of high-quality products. The aim is to develop ‘a promising production mix’ incorporating a variety of grades and sizes.

Since the commissioning of Mill 2000, a state-of-the-art cold-rolled products plant capable of producing cold-rolled and hot-dip galvanised products, MMK’s capabilities have ‘significantly improved’. As a result, the company can produce high-tensile DP, TRIP and CP steel, all of which has interested the automotive industry.