Hyundai shares some energy-saving expertise

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Hyundai shares some energy-saving expertise


An employee checks a manufacturing process at Hyundai Steel’s technology research center in Dangjin, South Chungcheong. [JoongAng Ilbo]

Amid the drawn-out recession in the global steel market, Hyundai Steel, the second-largest player in the country, is sparing no effort to help its contractors make more efficient uses of energy.

Recognized as the first Korean steelmaker to have acquired ISO50001, an international standard for energy-efficient management system, Hyundai Steel, an affiliate of Hyundai Motor Group, is keeping its own power consumption at minimum levels through various techniques for efficiencies in the steelmaking process.

The company has been mulling over ways to cut back on energy losses since 2000 when a strong drive was made to cut energy costs across the steel industry as part of efforts to slash overall production costs.

“We have experience-based knowledge and skills on how to stanch energy losses,” said an official from the company’s public relations department. “We know where to install energy-conservation devices like inverters to effectively boost efficiency at production facilities.”

According to the Korea Electric Power Corporation yesterday, the steel industry is responsible for 9.9 percent of the country’s total power consumption. Power fees account for about 30 percent of each steel company’s costs, an industry insider said. As a result, steelmakers are highly conscious of their power use and are careful about keeping it in check.

In a move to share its knowledge with its own contractors, Hyundai Steel signed an agreement with five small and medium-size partners Monday to help them slash energy costs.

“Hyundai Steel will provide its knowhow and technologies for the small contractors that feel both financial and technical burdens in making energy-saving efforts,” said Lee Jong-in, an executive vice president at the company on Monday.

Hyundai Steel will conduct regular monitoring at their plants to check how much energy is being wasted. It also continues to advance into new markets with new products.

The steelmaker has set two goals this year: of going into emerging markets and developing new steel products. The goals are based on the idea that the East Asian market is already oversaturated with excessive production of certain types of steel in Korea, China and Japan.

The company is targeting the Southeast Asian market.

In April, the company signed MOUs on long-term supply agreements with customers in Indonesia and Singapore. In July, it explored exports to state-run companies in Myanmar.

The company has developed 10 different types of steel plates for automobiles for its parent company this year.

By Song Su-hyun []
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