The country’s largest steel producer, Steel Asia Manufacturing Corp., is investing USD500 million, or about PHP25 billion, for three integrated steel facilities in Luzon and Visayas.
In a media briefing Tuesday, Steel Asia Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Benjamin Yao said the investment is part of the PHP80-billion expansion plan of the company in a span of six years for the production of steel products which are not currently manufactured in the local market.
“The opportunity today, there’s strong demand with infrastructure coming up. There’s market, there’s opportunity in short period of time to have our own steel industry,” Yao told reporters.
He, however, noted that the country’s steel industry has remained laggard in the region after the National Steel Corp. in Iligan City failed and there has been no investment for integrated steel mill in the past years.
The Philippines only produced reinforcement steel or rebars through Steel Asia, which is also the largest rebar manufacturer in Southeast Asia.
Steel Asia Corporate Development Vice President Rafael Hidalgo said that USD150 million is being invested in its plant in Concepcion, Tarlac, another USD150 million is for the facility in Compostela, Cebu, and USD200 million for the mill in Lemery, Batangas.
“These are three integrated mills which will make its own steel and then convert it into steel products, which include two products which are currently not produced in the Philippines, one hundred percent imported. So, it will be the first of its kind here in the Philippines,” said Hidalgo.