Cia Siderúrgica Nacional SA, Brazil’s second-largest listed steelmaker by revenue, plans to increase the share of exports in its sales mix in order to prevent a slowdown in production at its mills, Chief Executive Officer Benjamin Steinbruch said on Tuesday.
CSN, as the company is known in Brazil, is trying to cope with an overvalued currency at home that could weigh on the profitability of shipping and selling steel products overseas, he said.
“We are already trying to” export more steel, “but you have the problem of the dollar at the moment because the real is overvalued,” Steinbruch said on the sidelines of a steel industry event in São Paulo. “Even if the margins are lower we have to export at the moment to avoid stopping production.”
CSN mills currently are running at full capacity.
Steinbruch also said that pricing conditions in the Brazilian domestic market for flat steel should “get better.” Price reductions could be possible in an environment of weak demand, such as Brazil’s current market, but they “reach a limit,” he said.