Since the Pecem Steel Corporation (CSP in Brazilian) set up its steel manufacturing plant in Pecem Port in Ceará, it has registered record production figures. And 2017 ends as an exceptional year for not just the company but also for the state as a whole. CSP’s contribution to the Ceará trade balance is nothing short of spectacular.
Since the plant opened in June 2016, it has produced 3 million tonnes of steel plates. The figure far exceeds initial expectations of 2.7 million tonnes in the first 18 months of production. But CSP is not just about steel production. The company has also made significant contributions to job creation in the state and to its trade balance.
World steel demand boosts CSP
One of the reasons behind the increase in steel production at CSP in Pecem Port comes in the surge in demand, both from the domestic market and internationally. According to the World Steel Association, demand for steel rose by 7% this year compared to 2016 to reach 1.622 billion tonnes. This trend is expected to continue throughout 2018.
CSP has also improved its manufacturing process to fine-tune production. Investment in the plant in 2017 alone totalled R$10 million. “CSP continues to work continuously to optimise its internal processes,” said Eduardo Parente, President of the company, quoted in a CSP press release. “Challenges are met daily through the commitment of our teams and cutting-edge technology. With regards to external logistical issues, these have been solved in partnership with the port authorities, Cearáportos.”
Job creation at Pecem Port
CSP is one of the main generators of employment in Ceará. The state ranks in fifth place in Brazil for job creation within the steel industry, lying behind states with much bigger industrial punch such as Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and Espiritu Santo.
Between 2006 and 2015 (latest figures available), there was a 767.3% increase in the number of jobs available in the steel sector in Ceará. CSP itself has created almost 17,500 jobs, both directly and indirectly.
CSP has also created openings for vacancies, for professional posts not previously available in the state. This in turn has enhanced training opportunities within the steel industry in Ceará.
Massive boost to trade balance
The export volume at Pecem Port rose significantly between January and October this year. The total value of exports exceeded US$1.65 billion, up 69.9% on the same period in 2016. In the month of October alone, exports totalled US$187.5 million.
As a result, Ceará’s trade balance has soared. Between 2016 and 2017 it rose by a massive 916.2% from US$79.5 billion to US$807.4 billion. Much of the increase has come about through the contribution of CSP to the state’s economy.
While the steel industry isn’t necessarily regarded as an environmentally-friendly sector, CSP in Ceará is pulling out all the stops to do its bit towards ‘green’ legislation. In November, the company received another environmental seal, the ISO 14001. CSP thereby becomes 1 of just 16 companies in Ceará with this distinction out of the mere 1,718 in Brazil as a whole.
Within Pecem Port, CSP recycles and reuses as much as possible. The company makes an important contribution to Fortaleza’s energy requirements. In November, thermoelectricity generated as a by-product from the steel manufacturing process reached over 530,000MWh, the equivalent of supplying over 3.5 million households for a month. This was sold to the National Interconnected System (SIN in Brazilian) for energy use.