Chinese steelmaker HBIS Group’s subsidiary, HBIS Serbia will resume operations of its No.1 blast furnace in Smederevo on Aug 16. 


The company noted in a media statement announcing the restart on Monday that the No. 1 furnace would resume production more than a year after it was forced to shut down in July 2020 due to the weak demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 


HBIS Serbia has only one blast furnace, No. 2, operating at present. However, it noted that the current demand strength has made the company reconsider its decision and the No. 1 furnace would enhance the steelmaker’s present production capacity once it resumes operations.


The HBIS Group produces steel, hot and cold-rolled products, and tin plate in southeast Europe through HBIS Serbia. The Smederevo plant produces iron at two blast furnaces and converts it to raw steel at a three-furnace converter shop. The company’s current estimated production capacity is 1.9mn mt of finished products annually.


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