On March 22, Dongkuk Steel Mill held a ceremony to receive slabs (a rectangular semi-finished steel product made by cooling off melted iron) produced by Brazil's CSP Steel Mill which started to produce melted iron by inserting embers into furnaces and starting them in June of last year at its Dangjin Plant in South Chungcheong Province, Korea.
Brazil's CSP Steel Mill is a joint venture among Dongkuk Steel Mill, POSCO and Vale, the largest natural resources development company in Brazil, with a ratio of 30%, 20% and 50%. The steel mill is capable of producing 3 million tons of melted iron at an area, the size of which equals that of 1,372 football fields combined (990 ha). Dongkuk Steel Mill took charge of the overall plan for the project which started in 2005. POSCO, which has a lot of experience in the construction of blast furnaces, has been in charge of technical consulting among others and Vale has supplied iron ore, which is a raw material for melted iron. Slabs transferred to Dangjin Plant this time reached a total of 58,751 tons.
"We reviewed the construction of blast furnaces in Venezuela, Canada and the United States, but it was not realized," said Jang Se-wook, vice chairman of Dongkuk Steel. "With a strong belief that nothing is impossible, we attempted the CSP Project in Brazil and completed our global steel production belt.
A slab is a semi-finished product that is reprocessed from steel products such as steel plates and hot-rolled steel sheets through a rolling process. POSCO’s Pohang and Gwangyang Works and Hyundai Steel’s Dangjin Steel Mill were the only domestic steel makers that can produce slabs with their own blast furnaces. This situation has so far compelled Dongkuk Steel Mill to buy all slabs it needed from the blast furnace makers at home and abroad.
Dongkuk Steel Mill secured 160 tons, more than the half of CSP Steel Mill’s annual production of 3 million tons. Among them, one million tons will be sold to the outside, and 600,000 tons will be used at its Dangjin Plant to produce high-quality steel plates (mainly steel plates upwards of 6 mm thick for shipbuilding).