Synopsis: Eastern Steel in Malaysia marks a significant milestone with the official launch of its second blast furnace, capable of producing 1.7 million metric tons of molten iron annually. The expansion project, initiated in March 2020, has seen the introduction of new facilities, including a sintering plant and coke production. With this addition, Eastern Steel aims to raise its steelmaking capacity from 700,000 to 2.7 million metric tons, positioning itself for growth in the export market, particularly in the production of slabs.Article:In a substantial development for Malaysia's Eastern Steel, the company has unveiled the official launch of its second blast furnace (BF) on October 9. This impressive new BF boasts a capacity of 1,380 cubic meters and has already produced its first batch of molten iron.The journey toward this expansion began in March 2020 with the commencement of construction on the new blast furnace. Throughout the summer, Eastern Steel witnessed the inauguration of additional facilities, including a sintering plant and coke production units. Over the past two months, the BF underwent trial production, culminating in this momentous launch.Before this expansion, Eastern Steel operated with a single blast furnace, providing a steelmaking capacity of 700,000 metric tons per year, according to official information. The company's product range included slabs and billets, with a primary focus on slabs, which found their way into the export market.However, the introduction of the second blast furnace signifies Eastern Steel's ambitious plans for growth. This expansion aims to boost the company's steelmaking capacity significantly, reaching an impressive 2.7 million metric tons per year. This strategic move is expected to enhance the company's presence and competitiveness, particularly in the realm of slab production, positioning it as a key player in the export market.As Eastern Steel continues its journey toward transformation and expansion, the next phase of the project is already on the horizon. This forthcoming phase includes the installation of a hot strip line with a capacity of approximately 2 million metric tons per year. Industry insiders anticipate that the first commercial production of hot-rolled coils (HRC) will commence in the second half of 2024, further solidifying Eastern Steel's position in the steel industry.Conclusion:Eastern Steel in Malaysia has reached a significant juncture in its growth trajectory with the launch of a second blast furnace. This expansion, initiated in 2020, demonstrates the company's commitment to expanding its steelmaking capacity. By increasing its capacity from 700,000 metric tons to an impressive 2.7 million metric tons per year, Eastern Steel is poised for substantial growth, particularly in the export market, where it primarily focuses on slab production. The future holds even more promise with plans for the installation of a hot strip line, with the first commercial hot-rolled coil production anticipated in the second half of 2024.