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voestalpine restarts the small blast furnace in Linz

2020-08-21 | 

In early September voestalpine will restart the small blast furnace in Linz which has been temporarily shut down since March, following the abrupt slump in customer demand caused by Covid-19. The gradual revival of demand, which is most pronounced in the automotive, electrical, and processing industries, has led to an increased need for high-quality steel grades, making this step possible. The first signs of recovery are also evident in the mechanical engineering and energy segments, for which the site in Linz also produces high quality steel products.

The Steel Division of the voestalpine Group produces high-quality steel products in Linz for all premium automotive manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as for the European white goods, mechanical engineering, and energy industries. Together with the two other blast furnaces at the site, the restart of the small blast furnace brings steel production back up to almost normal levels, after capacity was throttled back following Covid-19.

The economic growth and extent of the recovery varies within the voestalpine Group according to region and market segment. The railway systems and high bay warehousing technology sectors are performing well, while in contrast the aerospace and oil & natural gas industries have been particularly hard hit by the impact of the pandemic. voestalpine Tubulars, a company specialized in the production of seamless tubes for the oil & natural gas industry, has also been facing a competitive disadvantage in its most important market, the USA, since 2018, due to the protectionist tariffs on steel products (Section 232).

Steel production at the voestalpine sites in Linz and Donawitz

voestalpine produces its high-quality steel products at two sites. The voestalpine Steel Division operates one large and two small blast furnaces at the site in Linz, which together have an annual pig iron production capacity of around five million tons. Another two blast furnaces are located at the headquarters of the Metal Engineering Division, in Donawitz, Styria, and produce a total of up to 1.5 million tons of pig iron each year. One of the two blast furnaces in Donawitz is scheduled for interim repairs from June to October, and will only be restarted when customer demand requires.

The voestalpine Group

In its business segments, voestalpine is a globally leading steel and technology group with a unique combination of materials and processing expertise. voestalpine, which operates globally, has around 500 Group companies and locations in more than 50 countries on all five continents. It has been listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange since 1995. With its top-quality products and system solutions, it is a leading partner to the automotive and consumer goods industries as well as the aerospace and oil & gas industries, and is also the world market leader in railway systems, tool steel, and special sections. voestalpine is fully committed to the global climate goals and is working intensively to develop technologies which will allow it to decarbonize and reduce its CO2 emissions over the long term. In the business year 2019/20, the Group generated revenue of EUR 12.7 billion, with an operating result (EBITDA) of EUR 1.2 billion; it had about 49,000 employees worldwide.