International Steel Mills

Aramco, Baosteel Ink Deal to Build Saudi Plate Plant

Saudi Arabian energy company Aramco, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), and China’s Baoshan Iron & Steel (Baosteel) signed an agreement on May 1 to build a steel plate manufacturing facility in Saudi Arabia.

The operation is expected to have a plate production capacity of up to 1.5 million tons per year, Aramco said. It will be equipped with a natural gas-based, direct-reduced iron (DRI) furnace and an electric-arc furnace, aiming to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 60% vs. a traditional blast furnace, the company added.

Aramco noted that it would be the first facility of its kind in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which also includes Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Oman.

“The Kingdom’s first steel plate production facility is expected to enhance Saudi Arabia’s steel industry ecosystem and improve supply chain localization,” Amin H. Nasser, Aramco president and CEO, said in a statement.

Aramco said the agreement is subject to customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions.

PIF is the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia.

By Ethan Bernard,

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