New Delhi, Aug 1 (IANS) Global steel major ArcelorMittal on Thursday reported a $0.45 billion loss in the April-June quarter due to lower steel prices and high raw material cost.
During the first quarter of 2019, the company had reported a $0.41 billion profit.
"After a strong 2018, market conditions in the first half of 2019 have been very tough, with the profitability of our steel segments suffering due to lower steel prices combined with higher raw material costs. This has been only partially offset by improved profitability from our mining segment, but we have generated healthy free cash flow demonstrating the improved robustness of the business thanks to our Action 2020 plan," said Lakshmi N. Mittal, CEO and Chairman of ArcelorMittal.
He said the global overcapacity remained a challenge and the company had reduced capacity in Europe in response to the current weak demand environment, which also impacted the turnaround of the 'ex-Ilva' facilities in Italy.
"Further action needs to be taken to address the increasing level of imports entering the continent due to ineffective safeguard measures and we continue to engage with the European Commission to create a level playing field for the sector," Mittal said, adding a supportive regulatory and funding environment is crucial to our ambition to significantly reduce emissions as announced in the company's recent Climate Action report.
The company said cash needs of the business for 2019 had been reduced by $1 billion to $5.4 billion, due to lower expected capex and tax. ArcelorMittal expected the global steel demand in 2019 to grow 0.5-1.5 per cent.
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