Steel corp sets goal of higher output

Tuesday, Jan 14, 2014 08:48

Steel products are loaded at Thai Nguyen Iron and Steel Joint Stock Company for export. The steel industry is forecast to face stiff competition this year. — VNA/VNS Photo Trong Dat
HA NOI (Biz Hub)— The Viet Nam Steel Corporation has targeted manufacturing nearly 1.5 million tonnes of billet steel and 2.6 million tonnes of rolled steel this year, up 24.5 per cent and 8 per cent from last year.

However, the corporation's general director Le Phu Hung noted that the steel industry will have to undertake greater efforts to achieve those production targets as the forecast is that there will be excess supply compared with demand, as well as increasingly fierce competition from Chinese imports.

Hung said at a seminar held in Ha Noi late last week that the corporation also proposes to undertake corporate restructuring by focusing on privatisation.

At the seminar, Nguyen Manh Quan, director of the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT)'s Department of Heavy Industry, predicted that the steel industry will continue facing stiff competition this year, especially after Viet Nam joins the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

The corporation should, therefore, define sound strategies and outline specific plans to meet every eventuality, Quan stressed, adding that MoIT will also introduce measures to solve the problems being faced by the sector this year.

Quan said the ministry will co-operate with the Ministry of Finance to help enterprises access higher levels of capital in a bid to promote production and other business operations.

In particular, MoIT will host a meeting to help the steel corporation co-operate with the Viet Nam Coal and Mineral Industries Corporation to encourage the coal and mineral mining company to use the steel corporation's output, he added.

If the co-operation materialises, it will help the corporation sell a significant quantity of steel products, Quan added.

Last year, the sector faced difficulties due to sharply declining demand for steel and increasing competition from rival Chinese companies.

Due to the low demand, steel manufacturers reduced production. In 2013, the total number of tonnes of billet steel and rolled steel manufactured was only 93 per cent of the target set for the year. — VNS

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