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Anshan Steel Postpones Mississippi Plant Investment on Lawmakers Objection

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  • Anshan Steel Postpones Mississippi Plant Investment on Lawmakers Objection

    Anshan Steel Postpones Mississippi Plant Investment on Lawmakers Objection
    By Bloomberg News - Aug 19, 2010 10:22 AM PT
    Anshan Steel Postpones Mississippi Plant Investment on Lawmakers Objection - Bloomberg


    Anshan Iron & Steel Group postponed an investment in a U.S. plant, the first by a Chinese mill in the country, because of objections from some lawmakers.

    “We are putting it aside,” Chen Ming, the vice chairman of listed unit Angang Steel Co. told reporters today in Hong Kong. “It’s more likely that they would disapprove it.”

    Anshan Steel, part of China’s fourth-largest steelmaker, in May agreed to build a reinforcing bar plant with Steel Development Co. in Mississippi. The investment poses a national security risk as the company is controlled by the Chinese government, a group of 50 U.S. lawmakers said in a July letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner.

    “It sends a signal to Chinese companies that investing in the U.S. would be very difficult and contain a lot of uncertainties,” said Xu Xiangchun, chief analyst of Mysteel Research Institute. “This small investment has nothing to do with energy, national defense, high-tech or any sectors that may harm the U.S. national security or economy.”

    Angang Steel gained 0.3 percent to close at HK$11.82 today in Hong Kong. The stock has shed 31 percent this year as raw materials costs rise and steel prices drop.

    Steel Development is a closely owned company led by Chairman John Correnti, a former executive at Nucor Corp., according to its website. The U.S. has slapped duties on some Chinese steel product imports in the past year, arguing that the Asian nation subsidizes its producers. Chinese steel-product exports more than doubled in the first six months of the year to 4.55 million metric tons as the global economy recovers.

    Steel Recovery

    U.S. lawmakers and industry groups argued the investment would give the state-tied company access to American technology and a subsidized foothold in the U.S.


    “Not only would this venture have set a dangerous precedent further undermining our domestic steel market, but it posed serious national security concerns,” U.S. Representative Tim Murphy, a Pennsylvania Republican and vice chairman of the Steel Caucus, said in a statement. “We will continue to fight to protect our domestic steel manufacturers should China attempt to infiltrate American steel companies.”

    The third quarter would be “the most difficult period” because of rising raw material costs and falling steel prices, and the market may improve in the fourth quarter, Chen said today. Angang Steel may post a loss in the third quarter, according to figures derived from the company’s projected nine- month profit on Aug. 17.

    Profit may be reduced by 100 million yuan, assuming exports remain the same in the second half as the first six months, after the government removed export tax rebate, Angang’s board secretary Fu Jihui said today at the same conference.

    The Chinese government removed export tax rebates of as much as 13 percent on flat steel, including hot-rolled coil and some cold-rolled products, from July 15.

    Iron ore prices for the third quarter will be between 1,100 yuan a ton and 1,200 yuan a ton, compared with a range from 838 yuan to 866 yuan in the first half, Chen said.

    --Wendy Leung, Helen Yuan, with reporting by Mark Drajem in Washington. Editors: Tan Hwee Ann, Steve Walsh.

    To contact the Bloomberg News staff on this story: Helen Yuan in Shanghai at hyuan@bloomberg.net Wendy Leung in Hong Kong at wleung12@bloomberg.net
    “the misery of being exploited by capitalists is nothing compared to the misery of not being exploited at all” -- Joan Robinson

  • #2
    Originally posted by xinhui View Post
    “This small investment has nothing to do with energy, national defense, high-tech or any sectors that may harm the U.S. national security or economy.”
    He's right, rebar isn't exactly a national security issue.

    Imo, this mill project was intended to get around the "buy america" provision in the stimulus bill which required gov't funded projects to use only US manufactured steel- something we may see more often as it relates to infrastructure projects.
    "We will go through our federal budget – page by page, line by line – eliminating those programs we don’t need, and insisting that those we do operate in a sensible cost-effective way." -President Barack Obama 11/25/2008

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    • #3
      idiocy-- first we complain that china doesn't buy enough, then we complain when they do buy.
      There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

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      • #4
        Congressional "steel" caucus? Is that the caucus paid for by the steel workers union?

        Congressional "steal" caucus would be more fitting.
        "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

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        • #5
          That'd be the first time I've heard of Republicans being in union pockets.

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          • #6
            Congressional "steal" caucus would be more fitting.
            yeah, how Iron-ic
            “the misery of being exploited by capitalists is nothing compared to the misery of not being exploited at all” -- Joan Robinson

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            • #7
              How silly is this, at a time of record unemployment?

              Originally posted by xinhui View Post

              U.S. lawmakers and industry groups argued the investment would give the state-tied company access to American technology and a subsidized foothold in the U.S.
              Hah, like, they already make the iphone and ipad!!!
              "Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?" ~ Epicurus

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              • #8
                I'm not sure if it is silly to prevent a communist state entity from investing in our factories. It's goal is to benefit the communist state not create returns on investment as a privately owned chinese companies goal would be. We are intrinsically connected to Communist China now. It's great for near future stability but, weakens our ability to encourage liberalization in China. We'd be better off linking investment here with the granting of actual worker rights in China. Of course many US Companies don't want them to get those freedoms...
                Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost.”
                ~Ronald Reagan

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                • #9
                  Who on his right mind would invest in a steel mill in the US?

                  If I had money and had to invest in the US, I would buy some farm land in the midwest or California, import Mexican workers and export to the Communist China.

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                  • #10
                    Because it has reached a point where it is cheap to produce certain type of steel product in the US, if one adds cost of an power plant into the calculation.



                    China tells Tangshan steel mills to slash output
                    Tue Sep 7, 2010 2:54am GMT

                    China tells Tangshan steel mills to slash output | Metals & Mining | Reuters


                    SHANGHAI, Sept 7 (Reuters) - Thirty steel mills in Tangshan, the capital of Hebei province in northern China, have been ordered to slash steel output by up to 70 percent from September, officials from several of those mills told Reuters.

                    Those steel mills, which have been included in the government list to cut production, include the state-owned Tangshan Steel, the major constituent of the country's top steelmaker Hebei Steel Group.

                    Tangshan Steel, the city's biggest mill, has been told to curb its crude steel output to 1 million tonnes per month from September to December, according to the government notice seen by Reuters, which cited a target for saving energy.

                    The city authorities have released a list of 30 steel mills in the region that will be directed to cut steel production over the rest of this year.

                    They include larger mills that remain after a mass shutdown of smaller mills.

                    The notice did not say what the company's previous monthly output was, but one steel official in the city said it was 1.7 million tonnes per month. Other mills have been told to make even deeper cuts.

                    The notice said the city's target for the whole of 2010 was now 67.5 million tonnes.

                    Earlier, about 18 steel mills in Wuan, also in Hebei province, were told to close their facilities. [ID:nTOE68502P] (Reporting by Ruby Lian and Tom Miles, Editing by Ken Wills)
                    “the misery of being exploited by capitalists is nothing compared to the misery of not being exploited at all” -- Joan Robinson

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by xinhui View Post
                      Tangshan, the capital of Hebei province in northern China
                      Now even Reuters journalists are lazy.
                      夫唯不爭,故天下莫能與之爭。

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by xinhui View Post
                        Because it has reached a point where it is cheap to produce certain type of steel product in the US, if one adds cost of an power plant into the calculation.
                        They're shutting down a bunch of aluminum mills too, due to electricity requirements. Some 2000 plants total between steel, coke, and aluminum.

                        This is going to have a big impact on us, since China will be buying up a lot of US aluminum. My suppliers are telling me to expect a $1/pound increase in price by the end of this year.

                        The same thing happened with stainless steel when they were building the olympics park.
                        Last edited by highsea; 07 Sep 10,, 19:37.
                        "We will go through our federal budget – page by page, line by line – eliminating those programs we don’t need, and insisting that those we do operate in a sensible cost-effective way." -President Barack Obama 11/25/2008

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yup.... if the Chinese government wants to do something............


                          August 9, 2010
                          In Crackdown on Energy Use, China to Shut 2,000 Factories
                          By KEITH BRADSHER

                          http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/10/bu...gewanted=print

                          HONG KONG — Earlier this summer, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao of China promised to use an “iron hand” to improve his country’s energy efficiency, and a growing number of businesses are now discovering that it feels like a fist.

                          The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology quietly published a list late Sunday of 2,087 steel mills, cement works and other energy-intensive factories required to close by Sept. 30.

                          Energy analysts described it as a significant step toward the country’s energy-efficiency goals, but not enough by itself to achieve them.

                          Over the years, provincial and municipal officials have sometimes tried to block Beijing’s attempts to close aging factories in their jurisdictions.

                          These officials have particularly sought to protect older steel mills and other heavy industrial operations that frequently have thousands of employees and have sometimes provided workers with housing, athletic facilities and other benefits since the 1950s or 1960s.

                          To prevent such local obstruction this time, the ministry said in a statement on its Web site that the factories on its list would be barred from obtaining bank loans, export credits, business licenses and land. The ministry even warned that their electricity would be shut off, if necessary.

                          The goal of the factory closings is “to enhance the structure of production, heighten the standard of technical capability and international competitiveness and realize a transformation of industry from being big to being strong,” the ministry said.

                          The announcement was the latest in a series of Chinese moves to increase energy efficiency. The National Development and Reform Commission, which is the government’s most powerful economic planning agency, announced last Friday that it had forced 22 provinces to halt their practice of providing electricity at discounted prices to energy-hungry industries like aluminum production.

                          The current Chinese five-year plan calls for using 20 percent less energy this year for each unit of economic output than in 2005. But surging production by heavy industry since last winter has put in question China’s ability to meet the target.

                          The success or failure of China’s energy-efficiency campaign is being watched closely not just by economists, who cite the campaign as one reason that growth of the Chinese economy has slowed down a little this summer, but also by climate scientists.

                          China’s energy consumption rose so sharply last winter that it produced the biggest surge ever of greenhouse gases by a single country. Power plants burned more coal to generate enough electricity to meet demand.

                          As China has become increasingly dependent on imported oil and coal, its national security establishment has become more visibly involved in energy policy and energy security, including efforts to improve energy efficiency.

                          Efficiency improved 14.4 percent in the first four years of the current plan, only to deteriorate by 3.6 percent in the first quarter of this year, according to official statistics. Mr. Wen responded by convening a special meeting of the cabinet in May to address the situation.

                          Energy efficiency was only 0.09 percent worse in the first half of this year than in the same period in 2009, according to statistics released last week.

                          Energy analysts said those statistics indicated improvement in efficiency in the second quarter that nearly offset the deterioration in the first quarter, although the government has not released separate figures for the second quarter.

                          Zhou Xizhou, an associate director for IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates in Beijing, said that the ministry’s new list of factory closings was a strong measure to improve efficiency. But he added that China’s goal of achieving a 20 percent improvement by the end of this year compared with 2005 was “still a tall order for the rest of the year.”

                          The ministry said in its statement that the factories to be closed would include 762 that make cement, 279 that produce paper, 175 that manufacture steel and 84 that process leather.

                          The factories were chosen after discussions with provincial and municipal officials to identify industrial operations with outdated, inefficient technology, the ministry said.

                          The ministry did not provide figures for the percentage of capacity to be closed in each industrial sector. The ministry also did not say how many employees would be affected.

                          Closing factories is more palatable now than in the past because a labor shortage in many cities has made it easier for workers, particularly young ones, to find other jobs.

                          The list of steel mills to be closed appeared to emphasize smaller, older mills producing fairly low-end grades of steel.

                          Edward Meng, the chief financial officer of China Gerui Advanced Materials, a steel-processing company in central China’s Henan Province, said that the closing of such mills was consistent with the government’s broader goals of consolidating the steel sector and pushing steel makers into the production of more sophisticated kinds of steel.

                          The International Energy Agency in Paris announced last month that China surpassed the United States last year as the world’s largest consumer of energy.

                          China passed the United States as the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases in 2006. That milestone came earlier because of China’s heavy reliance on coal, an especially dirty fossil fuel in terms of emission of gases contributing to global climate change.

                          In addition to the energy-efficiency objective in the current five-year plan, a plan announced by President Hu Jintao late last year called for China to reduce its carbon emissions per unit of economic output by 40 to 45 percent by 2020, compared with 2005 levels. Carbon emissions are a measurement of a country’s man-made emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.

                          Even if China meets its energy-efficiency goal this year and its carbon goal by 2020, its total carbon emissions are still on track to rise steeply in the next decade, according to forecasts by the International Energy Agency.

                          That is because of factors including rapid growth in the Chinese economy, growing car ownership and rising ownership of household appliances.
                          “the misery of being exploited by capitalists is nothing compared to the misery of not being exploited at all” -- Joan Robinson

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