Change negotiations will last at least six weeks

The Finnish division of SSAB Europe has initiated negotiations about changes at the plants in the cities of Hämeenlinna and Kankaanpää (Finland). According to the steel company, the reason is mainly low demand in the construction sector, Kallanish reports.

The talks, which will last at least six weeks, affect about 850 employees at the Hämeenlinna plant (excluding the pipe plant) and the Kankaanpää plant, and could lead to temporary layoffs. During the negotiations, alternatives aimed at adjusting the structure of operating costs in accordance with the expected demand and load will be considered. About 4,700 people work at SSAB in Finland.

«Our market situation is difficult, especially for colored coating products for the construction industry, and we do not see any signs of improvement,» said Anders Ek, head of the Finnish division of SSAB Europe.

Weak demand means the company now has to consider ways to adjust operations to the current state of affairs, he said.

As GMK Center reported earlier, operating profit of the Swedish SSAB in January-March 2023 amounted to 4.73 billion Swedish crowns ($460 million), exceeding the forecast of analysts. Compared to the adjusted results of the fourth quarter of 2022, it increased by SEK 965 million. SSAB Special Steels and SSAB Americas continue to show strong results. Meanwhile, a weaker European market with lower prices but higher raw material costs compared to Q1 2022 impacted SSAB Europe and subsidiaries Tibnor and Ruukki Construction. The latter were also affected by weak European construction activity.