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Steel Dynamics unsure of COVID-19`s impacts, moving forward with Sinton mill project

Steel Dynamics unsure of COVID-19`s impacts, moving forward with Sinton mill project

News is brought to you by Mr. Shailesh Karia

Published on date 23rdMarch 2020.

The company that wants to bring a $1.9 billion steel plant to Sinton said it is closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak as China flexes its steel-making muscle. Steel Dynamics said in its Wednesday first quarter earnings report it`s too early to determine the scope of the impacts from coronavirus on global and domestic economies and to the demand for steel.

The volume of its customer orders has remained steady, but given the continued spread of coronavirus and recent the temporary closures of sonme steel-consuming businesses, the company said expects the outbreak to "impact order activity in the coming weeks." The Fort Wayne, Indiana company said it believes trade protections that are already in place will continue to limit the amount of unfairly traded steel products coming into the United States. That will provide additional support for domestic steel mill use, the company said.

"Protecting the health and well-being of our teams, their families, and our communities is at the core of our company," said Mark D. Millett, Steel Dynamics` president/CEO. "We have been monitoring the COVID-19 situation and have implemented additional policies and procedures to protect our teams from exposure and to ensure uninterrupted service to our customers.

"Our commitment is to the safety of our people, families, communities, and to meet our customers` needs. This is supported by the strength of our capital foundation and unmatched cash flow generation capability that exists in both strong and weak demand environments." Steel Dynamics in July selected a plot near Sinton to develop a $1.9 billion electric-arc-furnace flat roll steel mill. The plant will be located about two miles east of the intersection of State Highway 89 and U.S. Highway 77. It`s expected to produce 3 million tons of steel each year, starting in mid-2021.

The project promises to be an economic game changer for San Patricio County; it is expected to create 600 jobs and produce 3 million tons of steel each year. China continues to produce steel at a high clip, despite disruptions from the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, China, which accounts for more than half of the global steel output, ramped up production in the first two months of 2020, even while it was fighting to contain the outbreak of the deadly virus.

China generated 154.7 million tons of crude steel in the first two months of the year, up 3.1% from the same period last year, per China`s National Bureau of Statistics. The China Iron and Steel Association reported the inventories of finished steel products were up 45 percent year over year in late February in China.

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