JSW to expand Texas steel mill

Expansion will include installation of electric arc furnace.


JSW Steel (USA) Inc., a subsidiary of India-based conglomerate the JSW Group, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the state of Texas regarding an investment of $500 million (in phases) to develop to expand its steelmaking complex in Baytown, Texas.

The investment will be used to expand the company’s plate and pipe mill unit in Baytown, which is located near Houston. The proposed project will include the installation of an electric arc furnace (EAF) that will use ferrous scrap as a raw material.

Since purchasing the steel mill in 2007, JSW indicates it has been operating at around 30 percent of capacity, which the company hopes to rectify with the investment.

The state of Texas will assist with the expansion through the awarding of a Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF) grant offer of $3.4 million.

“The memorandum signed by (Texas Gov.) Greg Abbott and JSW USA is part of our long-term strategy to enhance our U.S. footprint," says Parth Jindal of JSW Group. "It reiterates our commitment to stay invested and grow in the U.S. market. It also provides JSW USA an opportunity to participate in the USA’s infrastructure development and job creation priorities. Access to natural gas at extremely economical prices and the abundant availability of scrap steel in Texas make conditions very conducive for manufacturing through the electric arc furnace route.”

He adds, “JSW Steel (USA) Inc. wishes to create a world-class fully integrated steel complex that will bring precision manufacturing of high-quality steel plate and pipe to Texas.”

The Baytown steel mill produces hot-rolled plate widths up to 160 inches and thicknesses up to 6 inches, creating products primarily for the energy, petrochemical, defense and heavy equipment sectors.

The company will invest $150 million in the first phase (already underway) to augment current capabilities, which is expected to be complete by March 2020. JSW USA intends to use rest of the investment, up to $350 million, to set up the new EAF facility (subject to approvals).

The company says the investment will help it reach around 1 million metric tons of annual steelmaking capacity and will allow the mill to stop sourcing finished or semifinished steel from outside the United States.

“JSW’s motto is ‘Better Every Day,’ and that's the same approach we take in Texas,” remarks Abbott. “The $500 million investment from JSW Steel to expand its operations in Texas shows what we can achieve when we work to be better every single day. We look forward to forging an even stronger partnership and continuing economic and job growth in the Lone Star State.”