S&P Global Commodity Insights reported Belgian investment fund SOGEPA & Russian steelmaker NLMK joint venture NLMK Belgium Holdings’ NLMK La Louviere will resume production in January. The announcement comes just weeks after a fire knocked the facility off stream. According to the Belgian media, in December the company experienced two accidents at the hot and cold rolling mills. NLMK La Louviere had declared force majeure after a major breakage to a pinion shaft in one of the finishing stands at its hot strip mill. The incident happened on 9 December and Chief Commercial Officer Mr Burak Soydan sent a note to customers on 20 December. Separately, a fire broke out in La Louviere's cold rolling mill area. NLMK La Louvière is 50 kilometers south of the Belgian capital of Brussels. Both the Russian group and Belgian investment fund Sogepa hold a 49% stake while the Belgian Treasury holds the remaining 2%. NLMK La Louviere currently has a capacity of 1.7 million tonnes of hot-rolled steel per annum, but the plant is undergoing a second phase of modernization, which will increase this figure to 2.0 million tonnes per year. In addition, the company has installed a cold rolling mill for 600,000 tonnes per year. Slabs are delivered to the Belgian plant from the Novolipetsk Iron and Steel Works. European Commission placed a ban on Russian steel imports back on 15 March. However, Russian semi-finished steel products are not currently subject to any sanctions by the European Union. NLMK Belgium Holdings’ other assets include strip manufacturer NLMK Strasbourg Europe and NLMK Manage Service Center. It also owns plate manufacturers NLMK Clabecq and the NLMK Verona sites.