INDUSTRIAL giants Tata Steel have revealed their latest results - showing its European arm is performing well.
Despite a reduction in its markets compared with the same quarter from 2013, profitability improved. Production and deliveries were similar to the levels from the year before.
Chief executive of Tata Steel in Europe, Dr Karl-Ulrich Köhler, said: “European steel demand is moving in the right direction. Though demand remains well below levels we would regard as healthy, we can see greater stability emerging in the markets we serve.
“Our quarterly financial performance improved slightly, despite market spreads tightening compared to the previous year. This would not have happened without the work we are doing to reduce costs and improve our products and services.”
Tata Steel’s European arm includes its Hartlepol steel plant. Earlier this week, Tata revealed it had signed a series of contracts with Subsea 7 which is one of the world’s leading contractors in engineering, construction and subsea services to the offshore industry.
The contracts, worth £10m, will see Tata Steel supply more than 35 miles of pipe from Hartlepool’s mills.
Dr Köhler added: “Our operational performance matched that of a year ago, when we restored output to more normal levels.
“Our focus on operational reliability and costs will continue as we pursue further progress towards sustainable financial performance.”
A breakdown of the figures showed liquid steel production was virtually unchanged at 3.7 million tonnes. Deliveries increased by 2 per cent to 3.2m.
Dr Köhler added: “Europe’s position as the world’s most open market is bringing in a rising tide of imports”.
But Hartlepool is faring well. The plant supplied 500 tonnes of pipe for the 65,000-tonne HMS Queen Elizabeth - the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carrier which is the largest warship ever built in the UK.