Dutch company HPK Engineering has been awarded a 3-year management contract for Serbian steel mill Zelezara Smederevo. After nearly a year of negotiations with the Serbian government US-based Esmark was pushed out of the running for purchase and management of the state-owned steel mill.
HPK Engineering pledged to invest $20 million in the plant to start production as well as retaining the current 5000 employees and increasing salaries by 10 percent. Zelazara Smederevo has an annual production capacity of 2.2 million tons of steel but produced only around 350,000 tons in 2014. HPK pledged to double that in 2015 and show profit in six months.
“This is an important day for Zelezara Smederevo and an important day for Serbia,” said Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic.
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