WARSAW Jan 31 ArcelorMittal, the
world's biggest steelmaker, said it had decided to suspend
production temporarily at its steel plant and rolling mill in
Warsaw because of decreasing demand.
The company said that the industry in Poland has been
struggling for months with a decreasing number of orders for
reinforcing bars used in construction.
"This situation is mainly due to the illegal practices in
steel trading in Poland and VAT frauds on reinforcing bars
imported to Poland from neighbouring countries," ArcelorMittal
said in a statement.
Poland's construction industry is also struggling and
several large builders have been battling to avoid bankruptcy
because of unprofitable road contracts. Developers have also
seen a drop in demand for new homes.
Arcelor said that it would close the Warsaw steel plant and
rolling mill for nine and 11 days respectively, starting from
The company has cut operations in Europe after European
demand for steel dropped 8 to 9 percent last year. Last week it
announced the shutdown of its facilities in Belgium and plans to
close two idled blast furnaces in France.
However, ArceloMittal's chief executive this month said that
he expected global steel demand to grow by between 2 percent and
3 percent this year, mainly because of expanding U.S. and
emerging markets, with European consumption seen nearly flat.