Bernardo Velázquez analyses the energy situation in the iron and steel industry at the Aege Forum

The Chief Executive Officer of Acerinox is “optimistic about the possibility of a great State pact for energy” Competitiveness of the Spanish industry has great potential for improvement once energy costs become equal to those in neighbouring countries

The Chief Executive Officer of Acerinox, Bernardo Velázquez, today participated in the Energy Forum organised by the Association of High Energy Consuming Companies (AEGE) presenting the need for an energy price which is “competitive, stable and predictable” in Spain: an invoice which does not raise production costs, which does not vary according to external factors to the market and which offers the possibility of forecasting it without being subject to the expenses of the frequent fluctuations.

At a ceremony held in the Sala de Columnas at the Congress of Deputies, Velázquez highlighted that the cost of energy in Spain is higher by “30% compared to France, 50% compared to Germany, around 40% compared to Asia and almost 35% compared to the United States”; market led by North American Stainless (NAS), American subsidiary of Acerinox. 

As a consequence of these differences, for a great consumer like Acerinox electricity in Spain (a country in which the Group has its integrated factory Acerinox Europa) is between 20 and 30 million euros more expensive per year than for iron and steel companies of similar size in other countries”, which without a doubt has an important impact on the general results and the viability of new investments and the creation of new jobs.

Acerinox has an electro-intensive pattern of consumption which facilitates the integration of renewable energies and forms part of a sector, the iron and steel industry, which makes considerable investments in  R+D+i to promote energy efficiency and management of demand in order to control consumption, which he also pointed out.

For this reason, Velázquez highlighted “that the current electric bidding system leads to the loss of competitiveness of plants like ours compared to the other companies in the market”. 

In his speech, the Chief Executive Officer of Acerinox highlighted that “electricity bills in Spain have inappropriate costs associated to them, which have an impact on the industry”, such as those arising from insularity, and he has proposed for this to be transfered to the General State Budget (PGE).