Australias largest steelmaker, BlueScope Steel Ltd.,
posted an Australian $12-million ($12.3-million) net loss for
its fiscal first half, an improvement over its A$530-million
loss a year earlier despite an 18-percent dip in revenue to
A$3.7 billion ($3.8 billion) from A$4.5 billion.
Melbourne-based BlueScope said
it stemmed its losses for the six months ended Dec. 31 by
shutting down a blast furnace, halting unprofitable exports and
cutting long-term investment at its Port Kembla Works.
coated and industrial products division, the biggest unit by
sales, turned a profitposting earnings before interest,
taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) of A$79 million
($81 million) in contrast to a loss of A$94 million a year
earlier"despite difficult trading conditions," managing
director and chief executive officer Paul OMalley said.
The "difficult conditions" included some softening of domestic
volumes and dumped imports, which the company expects to be
partially stemmed following the Australian governments
anti-dumping reforms in December.
OMalley said the company
is set to benefit from a joint venture with Tokyo-based Nippon
Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp., which should be completed by
the end of March.
"Net proceeds of approximately
(U.S.) $540 million will deliver a very strong balance sheet
and enhance financial flexibility to invest in growth
opportunities," he said in a statement.
The company said it expects
conditions to continue improving in the second half of its
Meanwhile, BlueScope subsidiary
PT BlueScope Lysaght Indonesia announced plans to construct 10
plants across the country by 2016 in a bid to expand its sales
and supply chain network. The Jakarta-based company will invest
about $500,000 per location, vice president of corporate and
external affairs Lucia Karina told AMM sister
publication Steel First.
The company has already set up
one new facility in Semarang and is progressing with three
other facilities this year, Karina said.
PT BlueScope Lysaght
Indonesias president director, Willius Suwandana, told
the Jakarta Globe that the company is eyeing the
cities of Balikpapan, Makassar and Palembang as potential sites
for new plants. He said the new plants, which will manufacture
roll-formed products, also will help cut distribution costs for
BlueScope Lysaght is a
downstream group of companies providing roll-forming, cladding
and associated building product solutions for the Australian
and Asian construction markets.
BlueScope has one plant
operating under PT BlueScope Steel Indonesia and four
facilities under PT BlueScope Lysaght Indonesia in the
A version of this article was first published by AMM sister
publication Steel First.