Angang Steel Investment in U.S. Steel Mill is in Question
According to a Reuters news report from earlier this morning, Anshan Steel (Angang) reported their “state-owned parent has put its plan to invest in a U.S. steel plant on hold after facing opposition from U.S. lawmakers.”
The report went on to say Chen Ming, vice-chairman of Angang said the company would not lose any money on the project as none had yet changed hands. He told reporters the decision was made, “…because of the United States and we believe the chance for the project to be approved was small.”
A group of 50 U.S. Congressmen called for an investigation of the potential investment by a Chinese government owned mill in a U.S. steel facility. Tim Murphy (R-PA), Vice-Chairman of the Congressional Steel Caucus responded to the news with the following statement, "Not only would this venture have set a dangerous precedent further undermining our domestic steel market, but it posed a serious national security concerns. We will continue to fight to protect our domestic steel manufacturers should China attempt to infiltrate American steel companies in the future."
The hubbub is all about Anshan Iron & Steel Group agreeing to take a 14 percent stake in a $175 rebar facility which is to be constructed in Amory, Mississippi by John Correnti and his Steel Development Company.
Not so Fast…it ain't over till the fat lady sings
Platts reported this afternoon after communicating with Mark Bula, Chief Commercial Officer for the Steel Development Company that Anshan was considered by SDCO a “valued partner.”
Platts Steel Markets Daily then went on to say in their article published earlier today:
"Nonetheless, executives at Steel Development Company were still talking Thursday as though Anshan was involved. "Our success will add to the US GDP and create American jobs at a time when it is most needed. Anshan Steel is a valued partner in that effort, and we look forward to continue working with them and all our partners towards attaining this goal," Mark Bula, chief commercial officer, told Platts in an email.
"Steel Development is committed to continue working with its investment partners to complete the financing necessary to create an estimated 1000 immediate construction jobs plus 200 permanent US manufacturing jobs by building a low cost steel rebar manufacturing plant in Amory, Mississippi," Bula noted, declining to elaborate any further.”
SMU has now heard of other conflicting reports coming out of China regarding what was (or was not) said by Angang and what their real position is. We asked one of our sources in Asia if he knew of any announcement from Angang and he reported hearing "no news."
So, exactly what the Angang/SDCO relationship is at this point in time is at best - unclear. America welcome to the world of China steel companies...
For those interested in this subject. John Correnti will be speaking at an AIIS function in Houston, Texas on September 30th. You can find more details on the AIIS website www.aiis.org.
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SMU would also like to recommend our first steel conference which will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 19, 2010. You can learn more about our conference by reading the article in the Featured News section of our website on the Home Page.