Chinese steel manufacturer to construct its largest steel mill in South Africa

steel-wagaboodlemum-flickrChinese steel producer Hebei Iron & Steel Group will build its largest overseas steel mill in South Africa

Hebei Iron & Steel Group has signed a 51 per cent stake in a venture with the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa and the China-Africa Development Fund to build the mill.

Company officials, however, did not reveal the project cost.

The plant is expected to produce five metric tonnes of construction steel by 2019. Production is likely to begin in 2015, stated a report in The Wall Street Journal.

China produces 43 per cent of the world’s steel. The country has reportedly not been too successful in establishing a global presence in the steel industry. Hebei Iron & Steel Group’s decision to invest in South Africa has come at a time when Chinese policy groups are attempting to ease China’s restrictions on foreign investment in the steel sector, added the report.

Zhang Changfu, secretary general of China Iron and Steel Association, said, “We have to increase our steel companies’ openness to globalisation. Foreign investment isn't allowed. This has to change. If you don't let people in, how do you go out?”

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