Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 15 April 2009 – Assmang Limited – leading South African supplier of raw material to the world’s steel mills and alloy plants – has announced further production cutbacks in its operations.
In a statement released here, the company – which is jointly owned by African Rainbow Minerals Limited (50%) and Assore Limited (50%) – revealed that due to the ongoing low levels of carbon steel production in its major markets, it had been compelled to shut down its No 5 high carbon ferromanganese furnace (capacity +/- 55 000 tpa) at its Cato Ridge works last week.
The statement added that furnaces 3 and 4 remained shut down, and that these furnaces would be kept out of operation until market conditions warranted start-up. Cato Ridge Alloys’ convertor for production of refined alloys, which had not produced since December 2008, remained closed and would be restarted as demand increased.
“It has also been decided that due to the global reduction in stainless steel production, two charge chrome furnaces at the Machadadorp works will operate until the end of May,” the statement continued, “and thereafter all four furnaces will be shut down. Any furnace start ups will be dependent on market conditions,” it said.
Along with this reduction in ferrochrome production, chrome ore production at the Dwarsrivier Chrome Mine will be scaled back commensurately.