News Global Market US Steel Kosice 06 February 2023
In 2023, steel deliveries to customers are expected to grow by 1-20%
In 2022, the Slovak steel company US Steel Kosice (USSK) reduced the shipment of steel by customers by 13% compared to 2021 – to 3.76 million tons, reports Kallanish.
In the fourth quarter of 2022, the company reduced product shipments by 30% compared to the same period in 2021 – to 715 thousand tons. The sharp reduction reflects the decrease in demand for steel in Europe, which forced local steelmakers, including USSK, to reduce or stop production on some blast furnaces.
In 2023, the company plans to increase steel shipments by 1-20% compared to the previous year – up to 3.8-4 million tons.
Crude steel production at US Steel Kosice in 2022 amounted to 3.84 million tons, which is 22% less than in 2021. In the fourth quarter, the company cut steel output in half – to 589,000 tons. During this period, the plant’s capacity was loaded by 47% compared to 94% in October-December 2021. In 2022, the utilization of production capacities fell to 77% against 99% a year earlier.
In addition, in 2022, the supply of raw materials (iron ore and coal) from the American parent company US Steel to the Slovak plant USSK decreased to 144 thousand tons compared to 439 thousand tons in 2021. In the fourth quarter, raw materials were not supplied to the plant.
Thanks to a productive first half, US Steel Kosice’s net sales for 2022 remained at the previous year’s level of $4.26 billion. However, operating revenue more than halved year-on-year – up to $444 million.
As GMK Center reported earlier, in early September 2022, US Steel Kosice suspended one of the blast furnaces amid high energy costs and lack of demand for steel in Europe. In December, the company shut down another blast furnace, leaving only one unit in operation.
Already in January 2023, the Slovak company resumed the operation of previously stopped furnaces. Capacities began to be launched amid rising European prices for hot-rolled coils, as well as increased demand due to replenishment of stocks by service centers in Europe. The total capacity of the plant’s three blast furnaces is estimated at 4.5 million tons of steel per year.
Also, steel production in the countries of the European Union in 2022 decreased by 10.5% compared to 2021 – to 136.7 million tons. In December, the indicator fell by 16.7% y/y – to 9.2 million tons. Slovakia produced 3.9 million tons of steel during the year, which is 20.4% less compared to the previous year.