Big River Steel Wins its Permit Fight with Nucor for New Arkansas Plant

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A planned $1.2 billion steel mill planned for northeast Arkansas cleared an important hurdle Friday with a state regulatory panel’s approval of its air quality permit, according to the Associated Press.

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Big River Steel had a lengthy fight in Little Rock, Ark., for the permit for its Osceola plant, with competitor Nucor Steel in Blytheville, filing multiple objections along the way. Blytheville and Osceola are both in Mississippi County. Big River’s permit was officially approved and CEO John Correnti said investors in Germany should give the go-ahead now that the company has the environmental permit construction will start in June.

Correnti said Friday that the plant would employ 545 full-time steel workers. But a peak of 2,000 construction workers will be employed over the two years it will take to build the mill. More jobs will accompany the plant, with trucking companies and equipment repair businesses expected to do business nearby.

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Chinese steel prices were flat for the day. The price of iron ore 58% fines from India hit a high price of CNY 840.00 ($134.34) and a low price of CNY 830.00 ($132.74) per dry metric ton. The price of Chinese HRC remained essentially flat at CNY 3,450 ($551.74) per metric ton. The price of Chinese coking coal held steady at CNY 1,390 ($222.29) per metric ton.

The cash price of steel billet continues hovering around $390.00 per metric ton on the LME for the fifth day in a row. For the fifth day in a row, the 3-month price of steel billet remained essentially flat on the LME at $400.00 per metric ton.

The 3-month price of the US HRC futures contract saw little change in its price yesterday at $638.00 per short ton. The US HRC futures contract spot price remained essentially flat at $660.00 per short ton.

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