U. S. Steel Serbia, d. o. o.
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Economic Development Center

About U. S. Steel Serbia, d.o.o.

U. S. Steel Serbia, with operations and branchs in Smederevo, Sabac and Kucevo, manufactures and sells hot and cold rolled sheet products as well as tin mill products shaped as coils and sheets.

On September 12, 2003, United States Steel Corporation purchased the Serbian steel company, Sartid, a.d., out of bankruptcy. The acquisition included the steel plant at Smederevo; the Port Division on the Danube River in Smederevo; and the tinplate factory in Sabac. The purchase also included four subsidiary companies in Smederevo: the Industrial Business Zone,Stara Zelezara (Old Steel Plant) and SPIN; and a limestone mine and processing operation in Kucevo.

In April of 2004, U. S. Steel Serbia opened its Economic Development Center in Belgrade.

Prior to the U. S. Steel acquisition, the bankrupt Sartid steel company operated well below its rated 2.2 million metric ton capacity. The operations had been badly neglected with insufficient investment in the machinery and infrastructure.

The operations and their more than 9,000 workers basically survived on limited state assistance aimed at preventing collapse of the company and the social unrest likely to ensue with the collapse of one of Serbia's largest companies.

In November 2002, at the request of the Serbian government and the administrator of the bankruptcy procedure, United States Steel Corporation entered into Commercial and Technical Service Agreements (CTSA) to operate the steel plants. During the following ten months, U. S. Steel managed the operations, paying the monthly costs of employee salaries, raw materials charges, utility and railway bills. The managing agreements prevented the collapse of the company and economic devastation in the region.

On September 12, 2003, after months of negotiation, a wholly owned subsidiary of U. S. Steel acquired SARTID a.d. out of bankruptcy. Thus, U. S. Steel became one of the leading investors in Serbia and Montenegro.

Under the purchase agreement, U. S. Steel made additional commitments that include:

  • a stable employment policy for 9,100 employees over three years
  • investments of up to $150 million over five years for repairing, rehabilitating, improving and upgrading the facilities
  • community support and project investments worth $5 million over three years
  • investment of $1.5 million for an Economic Development Center (EDC) to operate in Belgrade aimed at attracting foreign investors to Serbia.
During its first year of ownership, U. S. Steel Serbia, d.o.o. has made a series of capital investments including:

  • a $3.2 million rehabilitation and startup of the K-3 steel producing converter, idle for more than 13 years
  • purchase of a $2.3 million tension leveler system for enhancing output and quality of tinplate products at the Sabac plant
  • a $10.5 million project upgrading electronic controls on the Smederevo Plant's cold reduction sheet products line
In September, 2004, the company announced it would invest more than $38 million in projects to advance the Smederevo Plant's production to its rated raw steel capability of 2.2 million metric tons. The projects include:

  • rebuilding the plant's No. 1 blast furnace, idle since 1987
  • improvements in the basic oxygen steel producing shop to enlarge furnace heat sizes from 92 to 112 tons per batch, a 20 percent increase in output
  • modernization of the plant's two continuous casting machines with installation of variable width casting molds.

U. S. Steel Serbia produced more than 1 million metric tons of raw steel in 2004, an increase of about 40 percent over the output of 2003. Production at the Smederevo Plant has never reached engineered capability. The all-time production record was 842,000 tons set in 1997. Output declined sharply in the years that followed.

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