ArcelorMittal has a highly integrated strategy upstream. What is its origin
Take a historical perspective. Up to thirty years ago, the Steelworkers were vertically integrated. Each had its own mines. Then the strategy to specialize on steel is imposed. Our philosophy since the beginning has been to the contrary that vertical integration allows much better control costs and reduce the volatility of our activity. For us, therefore, there is nothing new. In 1992, when we bought a company privatized in the Mexico, we have also taken an interest in a mine. In the Kazakhstan, we bought the mill in 1995 and a mine of iron in 1999.
Far has to go the integration
The idea is to secure the resources that you can not pass you. This is the case of iron ore, coal, manganese, of electricity, and ferro-alloys, nickel, zinc... And once you have defined your strategic ambitions, you must be attentive to opportunities. In emerging countries, we realize that there are opportunities to seize.
This does not become still more important to be autonomous while the mining sector is growing
Need to understand the subject by the places where the needs will be. Today, the India is an exporter of iron ore, but we do not know if this will always be the case. The Brazil is a large exporter of iron ore, but with the domestic steel demand, the country will export long Ditto for the Russia for the Ukraine... The question is therefore not only to know how many players will lead the market, but also where the growth of the steel industry will take place and how the relate to iron ore. It is one of the reasons why we believe need to cover at least part of these raw materials.
Would participate you in mining consolidation
You must understand one thing: we do not consider mining as an activity in itself. Our approach is to cover our own needs. We are determined to keep the steel as our core business and do what it takes to support. And we still have much work before cover our needs. Our goal is to be self-sufficient in iron ore by 75 in 2012 and 90 in 2018, compared with 47 currently.
Therefore buy Xstrata, for example, would not make sense
We never comment on companies in particular. The question is whether what creates value for us. However iron ore will carry not easily. Here, each plant is linked to a source of raw materials specific to their needs. The Kazakhstan plant is related to the Kazakhstan mine. When we look at opportunities, we have this plan in mind. They must register in the overall scheme of our industrial sites. This is the case for projects in Senegal and Liberia, where you can easily deliver our plants by sea European and American. This gives you an important advantage because the freight is becoming an issue.
Even integrate, why not have your own shipping company
We have. Or more accurately, we have a long-term agreements on bulk carriers under contract for twenty years. This allows us to use our own way everywhere in the world. With these agreements, we cover approximately 40 of our cargo. And this share is to grow as it will increase our self-sufficiency in iron ore.
Electricity is also an integral part of this strategy
The energy will become a key element of our business. To produce 1 tonne of steel, you will need 5 to 6 gigajoules. But energy has become a fairly volatile resource. It is therefore necessary to secure. This is what we have done in the Kazakhstan, where we bought a power plant, or the Mexico, where we have two gas turbines. When one looks at the subject, one finds it is better to consider it with a long-term perspective. The issue is that if you have a reliable energy at a reasonable cost to meet your needs.
As in Romania, where ArcelorMittal is a candidate for a nuclear power plant. Do you have other projects
Yes, if opportunities arise, have look them. We thus study opportunities of common South Africa and Trinidad companies because we have strong needs electricity. On these countries, we are at the stage of discussions.
Are you interested in the purchase of the 37 held by the family Duval in Eramet, which produces nickel and manganese
We do not comment specific folders. What we clearly said, is that we are a company that believes in the vertical integration. This strategy of integration for all needs raw materials that we consider essential for a sustainable steel industry. We thus acquired a producer of ferromanganese in Slovakia.
You have spurned at the auction of the Elga in Russia mine...
It is an opportunity. We have made the effort to participate and we're certainly not discouraged by the turn of events. Indeed, we have just signed an agreement to build a steel complex in Russia. We need to understand the perspective of the Russian Government: its strategy in the raw, the participation of foreign investors has this strategy and, finally, the opening of the broader economy to Western investors.
What is your goal of self-sufficiency in the coal
Currently, we have 13 million tonnes per year and want to rise to 17 million. Kazakh coal supplies our local factories, but also those of Ukraine and Romania. We have other projects in development, the Kazakhstan, Mozambique and India always. We also look at opportunities in Russia.
You are also responsible for steel tubes. Are you interested by Vallourec
We do not comment the rumours. We want to grow in tubes and pipes and want to be part of the first three actors of the sector. Currently, we are the fifth. Internal growth can allow us to achieve this goal.
Can this also through acquisitions
Let me answer you otherwise. The history of ArcelorMittal was based on the idea that a procurement process was more quickly achieve our growth strategy. Today, the exercise is to compare the value that creates an acquisition and the construction or renovation of plant project.