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30 may
First forge at Forges de Clabecq

First forge at Clabecq (authorized by the Queen Maria Theresa of Hungary and Bohemia)

14 may
Clabecq was saved from the bankrupcy

As the forge had financial problems, Edouard Goffin decided to take it over to avoid the bankruptcy.

15 may
Creation of the 'Usines Gustave Boël, currently NLMK La Louvière

12 may
Foundation of ‘Forges de Strasbourg’

15 may
The mill ‘Gustave Boël’ invests in a blast furnace

The Belgian mill, in search of an integrated production, makes a big investment in a blast furnace.

14 may
Foundation of ‘Det Danske Stålvalseværk’

As production output increased, the headcount and structure of plant personnel was ever changing. The number of workers went up although the proportion of engineering and white-collar personnel decreased:

1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939 1940
Workers 255 1,553 1,763 1,477 1,360 1,331 1,201
Engineers and technicians 25 167 183 174 175 169 159
Junior maintenance staff 12 99 257 275 278 262 253
White-collar employees 20 126 142 135 135 145 121
10 may
Forges de Strasbourg change its name into ‘Laminoirs de Strasbourg’

On 18 March 1966, basic oxygen furnace shop No. 1 (BOF-1) was put in operation. By the morning of March 19, the first slab was produced. The following words were immediately written on it in chalk: “Hurrah! Long live the working class!” The following day, the slab produced was used to cast a bas-relief featuring the words: “A gift for the 23rd Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. First converter steel produced at NLMZ. March 1966”. The shop reached its design capacity in 14 months, which was 16 months prior to the target date.

BOF-1 was the first in the world to combine heavy-duty converters and high-performance vertical continuous slab casters in a single technological cycle. During implementation of this technology, the basic principles of logistics were developed for combination of high-performance basic oxygen furnaces, metal purification units and continuous casting machines. The subsequent scope of work for reconstruction of the shop’s equipment made it possible to improve the operational level of the continuous slab casters and provide a substantial increase in the capacity of the BOF production .

NLMZ’s new steelmaking method gave birth to the currently widespread technology of ’continuous-continuous casting‘, which means continuous casting of ingots fr om a series of replaceable steel teeming ladles.

This method delivered a reduction in metal loss, improved chemical homogeneity, surface finish and internal structure of cast metal, and later on fundamentally changed the downstream workflow, eliminating slabbing mills and enabling hot charging of ingots and ’direct‘ rolling of billets, significantly simplifying the procedure of billet preparation for steelmaking.

The plant improved key steelmaking production parameters for a wide range of high grade steel (including low carbon steel for automotive sheets and low alloy tube steel), as well as a melted steel protection system against secondary oxidation, mold oscillators for the continuous slab caster and the secondary slab cooling system. Stopper-free steel teeming from ladles was adopted and implemented as well.

On 6 July 1966, the State Commission authorised the first stage of the BOF shop for operation. Many builders were decorated with the highest award, the Order of Lenin, including Lipetskstroy Trust Manager Sergei Shuminsky and Chief Engineer Vladimir Khoroshavin. New residential neighbourhoods in Lipetsk were named after them.

On 1 June 1966, Stoilensky celebrated its fifth anniversary. More than 33 million cubic metres of overburden rock had been dumped over this time.

Anatoly Likhoradov

Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works in 1967–1970

Anatoly Likhoradov was born in Dnepropetrovsk. He began his career in 1942 as a mechanic at Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works.

He graduated from the Dnepropetrovsk Metallurgical Institute in 1948 and was sent to the local DMZ Petrovsky steelmaking plant wh ere he worked as assistant foreman, foreman, shift manager and chief foreman at the long steel shop.

In 1956–1963, he worked at Kryvorozhstal plant as Long Steel Shop Manager, Blooming Shop Manager, Chief Process Engineer and Deputy Chief Production Engineer.

Likhoradov was Director of DMZ Petrovsky steelmaking plant between 1963 and 1967.

In 1967 he was transferred to Lipetsk and appointed Director of Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. Under his leadership, the plant built and commissioned flat rolling shop No. 3, rolling equipment repair shop No. 1, coke battery No. 5, the Sukhoborye Recreation Centre and a sports arena with a swimming pool. He also adopted steelmaking in heavy-duty converters with subsequent continuous casting into a wide mix of slabs by special machines.

In 1970 Anatoly Likhoradov was appointed Deputy Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR. In 1978 he became Head of the Ferrous and Non-Ferrous Metallurgy Unit at the Administrative Department of the Council of Ministers.

Since 1991 he has served as Deputy Head of the International Liaison Department at Stinol Foreign Trade, an NLMK- owned company.

15 may
Clabecq faces oil crisis

High increase of raw materials due the oil crisis and steel demand decline at Clabecq.

In 1973, the USSR’s output totalled 131 million tonnes of steel and 91 million tonnes of rolled products. Steelmaking production grew by 4.8%, downstream production by 4.5% and steel tubing by 3.7% compared with the previous year.

The country’s industrial output went up by 7.3% in 1973, instead of 5.8% as had been targeted. Thanks to commissioning of new facilities in the 1970s, the USSR’s iron and steel industry reached a stable steel output of around 160 million tonnes by the mid-1980s.

In 1973 construction of sinter strands at the sinter plant was completed. Fluxed magnesia-manganese sinter technology was implemented here for the first time in the domestic iron and steel industry, which provided an increase in pig iron output at no additional cost.

NLMK sinter production is currently the largest in the industry with an annual design capacity of more than 11.5 million tonnes of sinter.

14 may
Usinor acquired ‘Laminoirs de Strasbourg’

On 4 August 1975, the Minister of Ferrous Metallurgy of the USSR issued the order for the construction of the Stoilensky plant at the Mining Administration premises and approved its charter and organisation.

On 31 December 1975, Oskolstroy and KMArudstroy Trusts started earth-moving operations at the industrial site.

16 november
Strikes at Clabecq

The first of numerous strikes started in November.

15 december
'Forges de Clabecq' is declared bankrupt

07 may
Big changes in the Belgian steel industry

The Italo-Swiss trader Duferco acquired some of Clabecq’s assets. La Louviere was merged by the Dutch group Hoogovens and then placed under legal composition.

13 may
The production resumes at Clabecq under the name 'Duferco Clabecq'

On 24 April 1998, JSC Stoilensky GOK was reorganised into an open joint-stock company – OJSC.

On 12 August 1998, Open Type Joint Stock Company Novolipetsk Steel was reorganised into OJSC Novolipetsk Steel (NLMK) based on the decision of the annual general meeting of shareholders dated 1 August 1998.

12 may
Duferco group acquires La Louviere

Duferco took over the company and changed its name to 'Duferco La Louvière'.

The main types of goods produced are fluxing and processing limestone with fine, medium and coarse fractions. Limestone is mined using open-pit mining methods and blasting.

The metals industry and the sugar industry are key consumers of these products.

On 24 December 1999, reconstruction of the mining-and-transport system at Stoilensky was completed. The commissioning certificate was signed at 10:00 a.m.

15 may
Duferco acquired 2 French mills

Acquisition by Duferco of 2 French mills (in Beautor and in Sorral) to win market share in the automotive industry.

In 2000 Novolipetsk began implementing a large-scale technical upgrade programme, which aimed to increase steel production output and improve the quality of steel products and production efficiency. The plant substantially increased investment in production development and capital repairs of major units, spending 3.19 billion rubles to achieve these goals.

Over 220 billion rubles was invested in production upgrade in and before 2012, with more than 190 projects implemented.

NLMK shipped 8 million tonnes of steel products in 2000. The plant’s commodity output grew by 8% compared with 1999. Overall, 7.5 million tonnes of rolled products was produced for an 8% growth rate, including 4.7 million tonnes of flat steel with 18.2% growth).

01 may
NLMK International acquires a part of ‘Det Danske Stålvalseværk’

NLMK International BV acquired a part of the Danish company’s assets and founded DanSteel A/S.

In June 2002, for the first time in the history of Stoilensky, 1.019 million tonnes of concentrate and 134,000 tonnes of sinter ore was shipped to customers.

In September 2002, 14 employees of Stoilensky received upper governmental awards for their long-term and excellent service and professional achievements from Evgeny Savchenko, Governor of Belgorod Region, by order of the Russian President Vladimir Putin. Stoilensky’s cutting-edge production technology is ensured by the continuous search for innovation and creative approach.

20 may
Favourable year for acquisitions

Foundation of Acciaierie Grigoli S.p.a. The new Veronese plant produced thick plates of high quality. The production capacity could exceed 300 thousands tonnes a year. The company, based in Vallese di Oppeano, is born after the sale of some assets of ‘Valsider the Leman’ (Switzerland) to the Grigoli family.
Duferco acquired ‘Laminoirs de Strasbourg’.

The new workflow for production of anisotropic electrical steel allowed NLMK to ensure:

  • Homogeneous structure and stable magnetic characteristics along the full length of strips due to reduction of impurities in steel and production of 20-tonne hot-rolled coils.

  • Steel ductility and drop in the consumption index by 1.3 times, in spite of an increase in silicon content to 3.20%.

  • Doubling of high grade steel production and improvement of its competitiveness.

Following the new workflow implementation, outdated production facilities electric arc furnace shop and flat rolling shop No. 1 were decommissioned, which enabled the plant to reduce its environmental impact significantly. The new equipment was commissioned as part of the Technical Upgrade Programme launched at NLMK in 2000.

On 15 February 2003, the beneficiation plant of Stoilensky produced record output of 36,400 tonnes of iron ore concentrate, with the daily target of 33,400 tonnes.

In November 2003, Stoilensky set a record in delivery volume. Steelworkers received 1.173 million tonnes of iron ore (1.002,4 million tonnes of concentrate and 170,600 tonnes of sinter ore).

16 may
Duferco takes over ‘Acciaierie Grigoli S.p.a’

The trading company gives a new name to the Veronese mill: ‘Verona Steel’.

On 15 December 2005, NLMK had an IPO at the London Stock Exchange, placing 420 million common shares (42 million GDS), which accounted for 7% of share capital. The offering price for the IPO at the LSE was set at $1.45 per share, $14.50 per GDS (10 shares). Following the IPO procedure, NLMK capitalisation totalled about $8.7 billion.

UBS Limited and Merrill Lynch International jointly acted as IPO bookrunners.

Alexey Lapshin

President of NLMK in 2006–2012

Alexey Lapshin graduated from the Orsk Petroleum Technology Vocational Training School and the All-Union Distance Learning Polytechnic Institute.

He began his career at Gaiskiy GOK in 1967, and then worked for Southern Urals Nickel Plant between 1975 and 1994, starting as a foreman and rising through the ranks to become Deputy CEO.

In 2006 he worked as Managing Director at DanSteel A/S and as a management and technical consultant with DanSteel A/S prior to that.

Alexey Lapshin was Head of Department at Rumelco from 1999 to 2002, being at the same time a member of the Board of Directors at NLMK.

In the period from 1994 to 1999 Lapshin held positions in various steelmaking companies and worked as a consultant on the development of the Stinol refrigerator manufacturing plant in Lipetsk.

09 october
NLMK and Duferco Group set up a joint venture taking the name ‘SIF’

NLMK acquires a stake in some of Duferco’s European production assets, including one steelmaking facility, five rolling mills and a network of steel service centres, both in Europe and in the USA. The JV’s total output of finished products is estimated at 4.5 million tonnes.

In 2006 NLMK acquired Independent Transportation Company LLC (NTK), a logistics operator providing 100% of the company’s railway transportation.

NTK was a key logistics asset of the Company, ensuring timely delivery of raw materials for steelmaking and shipment of finished products to customers in Russia and abroad. NTK coordinated interaction with Russian Railways and port authorities regarding export operations.

In 2006 NLMK acquired VIZ-Steel, Russia’s second-largest electrical steel producer with an annual capacity of 200,000 tonnes. VIZ-Steel’s semi-finished product needs are entirely supplied by NLMK.

VIZ-Steel is an electrical steel production facility located in Yekaterinburg. It produces cold-rolled electrical steel. The production capacity of VIZ-Steel totals around 200,000 tonnes of electrical steel per year. The company’s share of the Russian grain oriented steel market is 56%, with 11% of the global market.

Altai-Koks coke plant satisfying 100% of NLMK’s demand for coke was acquired in 2006.

Altai-Koks is the leading Russian coke plant producing high-quality coke and chemical products. The production capacity of Altai-Koks totals 3.8 million tonnes of six-percent humidity coke. The plant was to commission a new coke battery with a capacity of 1.14 million tonnes at the end of 2006.

Danish steel rolling company DanSteel A/S, a producer of thick steel plates, was acquired in 2006. The semi-finished product needs of DanSteel A/S are completely supplied by NLMK’s steel slabs.

The annual production output of DanSteel A/S is about 500,000 tonnes of hot-rolled thick plates. DanSteel A/S has state-of-the-art production facilities. For a few years, NLMK had successfully cooperated with the Danish company, being DanSteel’s key supplier of steel slabs since 2002.

In 2006 NLMK and Duferco Group set up a joint venture including one steelmaking facility and five rolling mills as well as a network of steel service centres in Europe and the USA. The JV’s total output of finished products was estimated at 4.5 million tonnes.

The companies approved a large-scale technical upgrade and development programme. Total investment was estimated at €375 million. Through the JV with Duferco, NLMK planned to increase slab production by 3.4 million tonnes, while Duferco, which had been facing a shortfall in slab capacity, aimed to expand the output of high value-added goods as well as steel products of special grades.

The JV included the following companies:

  • Carsid S.A. (Marcinelle, Belgium) – a slab producer with a production capacity of 2.1 million tonnes per year.

  • Duferco La Louvière S.A. (La Louvière, Belgium) – a rolled steel producer, with an annual hot-rolling capacity of 2.0 million tonnes, cold-rolling capacity of 1.6 million tonnes, and wire rod capacity of 0.36 million tonnes.

  • Duferco Clabecq S.A. (Ittre, Belgium) – a thick plate producer with a production capacity of 0.8 million tonnes per year.

  • Duferco Coating S.A.S. (Strasbourg and Beautor, France) – a coated steel producer comprising two production assets: Sorral (with an annual hot-dip galvanised steel capacity of 0.32 million tonnes and pre-painted steel capacity of 0.12 million tonnes) and Beautor (with an annual cold-rolling capacity of 0.35 million tonnes and electrogalvanised steel capacity of 0.33 million tonnes).

  • Duferco Farrell Corp. (Farrell, Pennsylvania, USA) – a flat rolled steel producer with an annual hot-rolling capacity of 1.8 million tonnes and cold-rolling capacity of 0.8 million tonnes.

Acciaierie Grigoli S.p.a. (Verona, Italy) – a producer of heavy plates and ingots with an annual heavy plate production capacity of 0.6 million tonnes.

In addition, the joint venture includes a distribution group of nine service centres selling products manufactured by the JV and other producers. The service centres are located in France, Belgium and Czech Republic.

15 may
New reheating furnace at La Louviere

According to the companies’ plans, the joint venture TBEA – NLMK (Shenyang) Metal Product Co. Ltd was to start its operation in the city of Shenyang (Liaoning Province, China). The JV primarily offered metal processing (slitting of steel coils) and distribution of GO and NGO steel produced by NLMK. The term of the agreement was 20 years. Total project investment amounted to $12 million.

In 2007 JV NLMK-Duferco acquired steel rolling company Sharon Coating (Winner Steel) based in Pennsylvania, USA.

Winner Steel is one of the largest American independent producers of galvanised steel. Its facilities include three continuous hot-dip galvanising lines with a total capacity of 1.2 million tonnes per year. The overall production output in 2006 was 0.6 million tonnes. Winner Steel’s 2006 sales revenue totalled around $427 million.

In 2007 NLMK acquired Maxi-Group, which included a number of companies involved in steelmaking, ferrous scrap collection and processing, and steel rolling.

In terms of technology and organisation, the steelmaking division of Maxi-Group is based on the mini-mill concept, both in operation and in construction terms, located in Sverdlovsk Region, Central regions of Russia, and the Volga Region. The company’s product mix includes long products (2.4 million tonnes), rebar (1.3 million tonnes) and metalware (0.55 million tonnes).

The scrap collection and processing division currently includes more than 300 facilities with an overall annual capacity of 3 million tonnes of scrap, and operates in 38 Russian regions. According to preliminary estimates, the volume of collected and processed scrap was to reach 2.3 million tonnes in 2007

15 may
SIF invests in new lines in its Belgian facilities

The joint venture launches the Q&T operations at Clabecq and the new pickling and cold-rolling lines at La Louvière.

In 2008 NLMK completed the acquisition of 100% stakes in Novexco (Cyprus) Limited in Cyprus and Novex Trading (Swiss) S.A. in Switzerland, both trading companies. This transaction was in line with the Company’s strategy to establish an international trading department.

The acquisition of these trading companies was instrumental to improve control over the Company’s export sales to core markets and enabled it to consolidate revenue from trading companies.

In 2008 NLMK commissioned a laser beam machine and developed a technology for GO steel laser processing with a specific loss rate of P1.7/50≤1.00 W/kg. Use of this steel allowed the Company to reduce electrical operating costs by 10%.

10 may
NLMK acquires all the shares of SIF held by Duferco

NLMK closed a deal to acquire the remaining 50% stake in ‘Steel Invest and Finance’ (SIF) from Duferco Group. SIF becomes a 100% owned subsidiary of NLMK. Following the acquisition, NLMK establishes its new international business divisions, NLMK Europe and NLMK USA, comprising all the assets of the European and American continent

NLMK’s new 150 MW recovery cogeneration plant was launched at the Lipetsk site in 2011. It was designed to process blast furnace gas from blast furnace No. 7.

With the new recovery cogeneration plant launched at the Lipetsk site, NLMK’s power generation capacity increased by 45%, to 482 MW, bringing the level of energy self-sufficiency from 47% up to 56%, regardless of the expansion of the blast furnace and steelmaking capacity. Investment in the project was 6.8 billion rubles.

Overall investment in the construction of the blast furnace, recovery cogeneration plant and BF infrastructure totalled 43 billion rubles.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) awarded the project a prize for its model integrated energy-saving strategy, promotion of best management practices and skills related to innovative environmental technologies and energy management solutions, which allowed gross emissions to be reduced by 15 times compared with the old technology.

In 2011 NLMK closed a deal to acquire the remaining 50% stake in Steel Invest and Finance (SIF) from Duferco Group. The transaction resulted in SIF becoming a 100% owned subsidiary of NLMK. Following the acquisition, NLMK established its new business divisions – NLMK Europe and NLMK USA comprising all international assets of the Group.

NLMK Europe division consolidated the Group’s assets in the European Union. It comprised six steel rolling production assets, in particular hot-rolling including for thick plates, cold-rolling, galvanising and pre-painting facilities as well as a network of service and distribution centres. The division employs 3,000 people. NLMK’s business model is unique for Europe and based on stable supply of semi-finished products (slabs) from Russia to European facilities located close to customers that produce flat high value-added products.

NLMK USA comprises three flat steel production facilities – NLMK Indiana, NLMK Pennsylvania (formerly, Duferco Farrell) and Sharon Coating. The division has an electric arc furnace (EAF) at NLMK Indiana with a capacity of 730,000 tonnes and steelmaking facilities with 2.7 million tonnes of capacity producing slabs, hot-rolled, cold-rolled and galvanised steel. The new division brought additional benefits through a common distribution setup in the USA, in particular for pipe and tube production as well as machine building.

In 2011 processing unit IV was commissioned at Stoilensky’s beneficiation plant. Following the launch, the iron ore concentrate output went up by 2 million tonnes, bringing the total annual concentrate production capacity to 14 million tonnes.

On 28 October 2011, the official commissioning ceremony for the new quenching & tempering line was held at NLMK Clabecq. Implementation of the project helped ensure sustainable development of NLMK Clabecq and overcome consequences of the economic global crisis. The annual capacity of the line is 250,000 tonnes, which means that one third of NLMK Clabecq’s products will pass through the quenching & tempering line.

NLMK Clabecq produces a wide range of thick plates, including light plates, which are distinguished by high-quality surface finish and adjustable flatness and thickness.

In 2011 CCL-3 improved the Company’s output of finished painted strips, 0.3–0.8 mm thick and 700–1,250 mm wide. These products enjoy stable demand in Russia, as they are used in manufacturing of building structures, including metal roof tiles, profiled panels, sandwich panels, and interior and exterior cladding. Strips produced at the new line are thinner than ever before.

In 2011 NLMK was granted the right to develop the third mine field of the Usinsk coal deposit (Usinsky-3) located in the northern part of the Komi Republic. The Usinsk deposit is located in the north-western part of the Pechora coal basin, 45 km south-west of the Vorkuta deposit in Komi. The Usinsk-3 deposit has commercial reserves of over 227 million tonnes of high-quality hard coking coal of Zh and KZh grades in C1+C2 categories.

In 2011 the Lipetsk site completed upgrade of a continuous casting machine (CCM-8) with a capacity of 2.5 million tonnes per year. CCM-8 was the fifth machine to be renovated at the Lipetsk site.

Its commissioning enabled the plant to launch production of slabs 355 mm thick, while slabs produced by continuous casting machines of this type in Russia are typically 300 mm thick. This reconstruction allowed NLMK to streamline the production of thick plates, in particular in subsidiary European companies – DanSteel and Clabecq. Thick plates are in high demand in the machine-building and energy sectors.

As part of the project, the CCM was fully revamped, including replacement of casting stands and installation of closed loop water cooling systems. CCM-8 is the first in Russia to use a dynamic secondary cooling model to improve the surface quality and internal structure of billets. The facility is fully equipped with an advanced automation and instrumentation system.

NLMK’s new 300-tonne BOF was put in operation in Lipetsk in 2011. Alongside other Technical Upgrade Programme activities, the launch of the new BOF enabled a 36% increase in steelmaking capacity at the Lipetsk site to 12.4 million tonnes per year.

In 2011 NLMK acquired National Laminations Group, a service centre in India specialising in electrical grain oriented steel cutting and distribution.

National Laminations Group is an anisotropic (grain oriented) steel processing and distribution company located in Mumbai. It has an annual processing capacity of 16,000 tonnes. The company also has warehousing facilities with a capacity of 40,000 tonnes located 20 km from Mumbai, close to the port, which facilitates delivery of NLMK’s grain oriented steel from Russia.

01 may
The companies of NLMK in Europe change their name and launch of a new line at NLMK DanSteel

NLMK Group rebrands its European mills and service centers. The companies sold by Duferco to NLMK Group change their names to NLMK Clabecq, NLMK La Louvière, NLMK Verona, NLMK DanSteel A/S, NLMK Strasbourg and NLMK Manage Steel Center.

In March 2012, the second concentrate delivery route was commissioned at Stoilensky, as part of a large-scale project for construction of Start-up Facility IV of the beneficiation plant. The route is designed to provide stable concentrate delivery from the new section, as well as reduce loading, forming and dispatch time.

15 may
Sogepa acquired a share in Clabecq and La Louviere

SOGEPA (Societe Wallonne de Gestion et de Participations S.A.) became a shareholder of NLMK Clabecq and NLMK La Louviere.

NLMK began construction of the mill in the Vorsino industrial park located 70 km from Moscow in 2008, investing 38 billion rubles in the project. The annual capacity of NLMK Kaluga amounted to 1.5 million tonnes of steel and 0.9 million tonnes of rolled products. The EAF shop includes an electric arc furnace, a ladle furnace and an 8-strand continuous casting machine designed to produce billets 100x100 mm, 125x125 mm, 150x150 mm and 160x160 mm in cross section and 6–12 m long. The equipment was supplied by Siemens VAI Metals Technologies (Austria).

The rolling shop includes a type-400/215 small and medium section mill (SMS Meer, Italy) producing AI class plain rebar 10–20 mm in diameter; A500C periodic class rebar 10–40 mm in diameter; as well as sections (25–100 mm equal angles, channels No. 5–12 and beams No. 8 and 10). Rolling capacity can potentially be expanded to 1.5 million tonnes by installing another rolling mill (medium section).

14 may
Modified stockholding for NLMK Belgium Holdings

NLMK Group and Belgian SOGEPA (Societe Wallonne de Gestion et de Participations S.A.) agree on changes to NLMK Belgium Holdings’ (NBH) ownership structure and governance. The parties signed an agreement increasing SOGEPA’s interest in NBH from 20.5% to 49%.

In March 2015The Board of Directors approved NLMK’s new dividend policy. According to the new dividend policy, dividends are to be paid on a quarterly basis with the payout in the range of 50% of net income and 50% of free cash flow calculated based on US GAAP consolidated financial statements, if Net Debt/EBITDA is 1.0x or less.

In 2015, NLMK Group and Belgian SOGEPA (Societe Wallonne de Gestion et de Participations S.A.) agreed on changes to NLMK Belgium Holdings’ (NBH) ownership structure and governance. The parties signed an agreement increasing SOGEPA’s interest in NBH from 20.5% to 49%.

NBH comprises the production companies and service centres of the NLMK Europe Strip Division (NLMK La Louvière, NLMK Strasbourg, NLMK Coating, NLMK Jemappes Steel Center, NLMK Manage Steel Center and NLMK Profil Batiment), and two NLMK Europe Plate production companies (NLMK Verona and NLMK Clabecq).

Under the new agreement, the NBH board of directors was be increased to include four representatives of NLMK Group and three representatives of SOGEPA. SOGEPA also received board seats at the principal production subsidiaries of NBH.

In May 2015, NLMK launched an innovative environmental facility – a biochemical waste water treatment facility at coke and chemical operations at the Lipetsk production site.

The facility is unique in Russia and employs a custom technology developed by Russian scientists for deep biochemical water purification from phenols, rhodanides, ammoniacal nitrogen and its oxides. The 160 m³/hour facility was designed using the best available technologies, and provided a twenty-fold improvement in the quality of treatment of coke and chemical operations waste water for reuse in the closed-loop water cycle.

All infrastructure and utilities were installed above ground on an isolated concrete area equipped with a rain, melt and drain water collector, preventing any chance of groundwater pollution in the event of a containment failure and providing twenty-fold reduction in air emissions of specific pollutants that are generated as industrial waste evaporates.

Total investment into the project which was implemented as part of NLMK’s Environmental Programme 2020 exceed RUB 2 billion.

In June 2015, NLMK launched operation of a new top-pressure recovery turbine (TRT), a green energy-generating facility, at its Lipetsk production site. Top-pressure recovery turbines generate energy using excess blast furnace gas pressure. Blast furnace gas produced during the smelting of hot metal in blast furnaces at Novolipetsk is also channeled to a heat power plant and a recovery cogeneration plant for captive energy generation.

The launched TRT is part of a complex with a total design capacity of 28 MW. Launch of the second TRT is scheduled in 2016. The project set to increase the plant’s energy self-sufficiency from 54% to 56%. The TRT will therefore reduce the amount of energy that must be purchased for the plant by 200 million kWh per year, which accounts for approximately 6% of total purchased energy. Investment in the two TRTs is estimated at 1.9 billion rubles.

In June 2015 NLMK Group announced the opening of a unified sales service centre to serve the Company’s domestic and international clients. Unified call-centre telephone number: +7 (495) 134 44 45.

In August 2015 NLMK Kaluga, a new generation EAF plant (part of NLMK Long Products) that manufactures a wide range of long products used in construction, produced its second million tonnes of steel. The launch of NLMK Kaluga in July 2013 was the Event of the Year in Russian ferrous metallurgy. The plant is based on the mini-mill concept of locating EAF steelmaking and rolling operations in close proximity to sources of raw materials and consumers of finished goods.