LIBERTY Ostrava’s tube plant intends to hire more than one hundred new skilled workers to support its drive to increase the production of seamless pipes intended for the US oil drilling and transport markets.
Ostrava’s tube plant produces about 130 thousand tonnes of seamless pipes each year and has continued to grow its production steadily over the years, despite the closure of its traditional US markets in 2018 due to the imposition of significant export tariffs on European steel products by the previous US Government.
The rationale for the plant’s intention to increase its US production targets are the US Government’s decision in October to adjust its tariff policy and allow European steel producers to import up to 4.3 million tonnes per year. The tariff-free quota is expected to be divided among European producers based on their previous export levels, which in the Czech Republic ‘s case was high.
Libor Černý, head of the tube plant of LIBERTY Ostrava, said: “We are looking forward to welcoming back to our American customers after a few frustrating years. Though the US market represented around 40% of our sales, we have managed to not only fully replace it, but even secure higher sales of our products in Europe. This has been down to mobilizing our own, streamlined sales team and setting up a sales network with sales representatives in Poland, Baltic states, Germany, and Benelux as well as being active in France, Italy, Spain and Scandinavia. Our return to the US market should help us grow our sales any further.”
Seamless steel pipes for oil drilling and transport are one of LIBERTY Ostrava’s High Added-Value products as they have to comply with stringent technical parameters and have a wide range of certificates. They are made of high-quality material and are resistant to acid environment with high sulfide contents, such as those found in the oil industry. The tube plant has been a holder of the API certificate, required for the export of goods for oil & gas sector, since the 1950´s.
For the anticipated production increase LIBERTY Ostrava needs to increase its tube plant production team by at least 100 employees, particularly operators for its Stiefel rolling mills so that it can effectively manage a three- and four-shift operation.