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Company News, 2003-12-08, 01:00 AM

Chinese joint venture TAGAL starts production Continuation of growth strategy in China

After a 24-month construction period, the TAGAL hot-dip galvanizing facility - a joint venture between ThyssenKrupp Stahl AG and Chinese steelmaker ANSC Angang New Steel Co. - has started production: The first galvanized coil was produced on December 4, 2003. TAGAL has an annual capacity in excess of 400,000 metric tons, of which some 80 percent will be supplied to the fast-growing Chinese automobile industry.

Built in the northern Chinese port city of Dalian at a cost of 180 million US dollars, the plant pro­duces hot-dip galvanized sheet meeting the highest surface quality requirements. TAGAL has 190 employees, including five from ThyssenKrupp Stahl in Germany. Angang New Steel Co is China`s second-biggest steel producer. Chairman Academician Liu Jie explains his company`s objectives: "We are looking to expand in particular in high-quality steel products, which are pri­marily required by the auto industry." ThyssenKrupp Stahl chief Dr. Karl-Ulrich Köhler: "In An­gang New Steel we have found a powerful cooperation partner whose knowledge of the Chinese growth market and contacts are of great benefit."

With an output of 3.9 million vehicles, China is already the fourth biggest automobile producer worldwide. Experts predict annual growth in this sector of twelve percent to 2008, boosting pro­duction to 6.9 million autos. 67% of requirements for high-quality hot-dip galvanized sheet are currently met by imports.

ThyssenKrupp Stahl AG will continue to expand its presence on the Chinese market in the future to capture a share of the growth in demand. ThyssenKrupp Zhong-Ren Tailored Blanks Ltd., a tailored blank production facility in Wuhan, started production last year. This plant will now pur­chase its starting material from TAGAL. Furthermore, there are plans to expand the Wuhan site to include a steel service center. It is also planned to set up additional tailored blank facilities, again in combination with steel service centers, in Changchun, Shanghai and Guangzhou, while a further tailored blank only production plant is to be built in Beijing. ThyssenKrupp Stahl AG will again cooperate with Chinese partners in these projects. The goal is to supply high-quality flat carbon steel products to the plants of international automobile companies throughout China.

Contact:

ThyssenKrupp Steel AG
Erwin Schneider
Tel.: +49 203 / 52 - 2 56 90
Fax: +49 203 / 52 - 2 57 07
e-mail: erwin.schneider@tks.thyssenkrupp.com

Dietmar Stamm
Tel.: +49 203 / 52 - 2 62 67
Fax: +49 203 / 52 - 2 57 07
e-mail: dietmar.stamm@tks.thyssenkrupp.com

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