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Steel: Fresh blow

Celsa steel works, Cardiff. Photo Cofiant Images/Alamy Stock Photo.

In another blow to Britain’s steel production, the Spanish company Celsa has put its Cardiff plant up for sale. The plant has been supplying steel for the construction of Hinkley Point nuclear power station, for the so-called Celtic Freeport and for offshore wind farms.

Celsa employs 750 workers in Cardiff and provides work for several hundred sub-contractors. Its website says it is the largest steel recycling company in Britain and that its electric arc furnace [see Steel: the backbone of industry] is the lowest carbon technology way to make steel.

Although the plant has the capacity to produce up to 1.2 million tonnes of steel a year, recently it has produced less than a million tonnes. That, though, is still around a sixth of Britain’s current output.

Celsa picked up the Cardiff site when Allied Steel and Wire went bankrupt in 2002. It received a £30 million emergency loan from the British taxpayer in July 2020, and it has been run by its creditors, led by Deutsche Bank, since September 2023.