Lakshmi Mittal
, Chief Executive,
ArcelorMittal
 
Brussels, Belgium — MININGREVIEW.COM — 11 February 2010 – ArcelorMittal “’ the world’s top steelmaker “’ has forecast higher shipments but lower prices for the first three months of 2010, as well as a core profit that could fall from a fourth-quarter 2009 figure which just missed expectations.

In a statement issued here, the company “’ which has about 8% of the global market and capacity some three times greater than nearest rival Nippon Steel “’ said it expected its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to be between US$1.8 (R13.5) and US$2.2 (R16.5) billion in the first quarter.

The average of a Reuters poll was US$2.6 billion (R19.5 billion), albeit with a wide range of forecasts.

Chief executive Lakshmi Mittal said 2010 would continue to be challenging, although capital expenditure would rise. “We therefore start the year in a good position to benefit from the progressive, albeit slow, recovery that is underway,” he added in a statement.

ArcelorMittal said its shipments were expected to be higher in the first quarter of this year than at the end of 2009, but it would be facing lower average selling prices and increased costs. Net debt was expected to increase over the period.