The Swedish multinational SSAB Swedish Steel AB has opened its new plant for the design of steel parts in the Guipuzcoan town of Irún. The company has chosen this location because of its proximity to the port of Pasaia, where it stores steel brought on ships, reports business journal Expansión. At a dispiriting time for the steel industry in the Basque Country, due to the closure of ArcelorMittal in Zumárraga (Gipuzkoa) and production cuts in Sestao (Bizkaia), a new steel company has arrived in the Basque Country like this.
The new factory is dedicated to the design, cutting and manufacture of steel parts, especially intended for the mining, energy, recycling, quarry, cement, metallurgy, fisheries and agriculture sectors. The SSAB factory will work with high quality steel shipped directly from Sweden to Pasaia, where it is deposited in SSAB’s own port warehouse. The steels in question are Strenx, with high yield strengths, and Hardox, an abrasion-resistant product.
These are special, high-strength steels, very different from those produced by ArcelorMittal at its Basque plants, as company officials explained. SSAB has plants in Sweden, Finland and the United States, employs 14,000 workers and markets its products in 50 countries. Moreover, the company has a worldwide network of 275 design and cutting centres with partner companies. This network includes the new plant in Irún, in this case owned entirely by the Swedish steelmaker.