India-based Tata Steel is set to close down the two blast furnaces at its loss-making Port Talbot works in South Wales, UK, during a four-year switch to EAF-based steelmaking. Under the proposals, 2,800 jobs are at risk.
Tata Steel states that the plan is designed to turn around the profitability of the loss-making plant and move to a sustainable business producing green steel. Tata Steel estimates the plan, when enacted, would reduce Tata Steel UK’s CO2 emissions by 5 million metric tons (mt) per year and overall UK country emissions by about 1.5%.
Under Tata Steel’s plan, the first BF and coke ovens will be closed around mid-2024, with the other hot-end assets progressively wound down during the rest of the year. Other operations will be restructured, including the intended closure of the continuous annealing processing line in March 2025. The Port Talbot hot strip mill will operate throughout the transition period and into the future.
The new 3-million mt EAF is scheduled to start up in 2027 and will cost $1.58 billion, with the UK government committed to contributing up to £500 million ($633 million).
The Port Talbot works produced 3.5 million mt of crude steel last year, according to CRU.
This article was first published by CRU. Learn more about CRU’s services at www.crugroup.com/analysis.
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