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Turkey’s Colakoglu sets two world records in stainless steelmaking: Primetals

A vacuum oxygen decarburization (VOD) plant supplied by Primetals Technologies to major Turkish steel producer Colakoglu achieved a heat size of 298.2 mt — a world record in stainless steelmaking, and also reached a carbon content of 5 parts per million (ppm) after decarburization, which marks another world record for VOD plants, according to a Primetals statement sent to S&P Global Commodity Insights April 29.

“Together with Primetals, we create value by recycling stainless scrap, thus creating stainless steel for the Turkish industry — and we will contribute to reducing Turkey’s trade deficit by replacing imports,” Ugur Dalbeler, CEO of Colakoglu said.

The plant was upgraded from an existing vacuum degassing plant also supplied by Primetals and Colakoglu is able to produce special steels like IF grades, ULC grades and stainless steel at the plant.

Immediately after start-up, for the first time in Turkey, stainless steel grades 304 and 304L were produced by Colakoglu in 2021, S&P Global reported earlier.

Colakoglu operates an electric arc steel plant in Dilovasi, western Turkey. The main products there are slabs for a hot rolling mill, and billets for producing rebar and rock bolts.

The company currently has a bar output capacity of 1 million mt/year and an HRC production capacity of 3 million mt/year.

Colakoglu is also on track to reach hot-rolled coil output capacity of 4.5 million mt/year in 2023 with its ongoing investments, CEO Ugur Dalbeler told S&P Global.

With Colakoglu’s increased HRC production and steelmaker Tosyali Demir Celik’s new 3.5 million mt/year HRC mill project, Turkey’s installed HRC output capacity is expected to exceed 23 million mt/year by 2023, reducing the country’s need to import HRC.

However, low-priced import offers, the declines seen in Chinese mills’ HRC pricing, and a slump in imported scrap prices have raised the pressure on Turkish mills’ HRC prices in recent days.

At least one Turkish hot-rolled coil producer has started to offer HRC as low as $1,050/mt EXW on April 29, sources told S&P Global, while an HRC producer source said their HRC offers fell to $1,100-$1,120/mt EXW. These prices reflect an over $100/mt decline on the week.

S&P Global’s weekly price assessment for domestic HRC was at $1,245/mt FOB on April 22.

— Cenk Can