Brussels (EFE).- The steel group ArcelorMittal obtained a net profit of 9,302 million dollars (8,668 million euros) in 2022, 38% less than a year earlier, after registering a “deterioration” in market conditions given the geopolitical uncertainty.
In the last quarter of 2022, the company’s net profit contracted 93% in year-on-year terms, to 261 million dollars (243 million euros) and also below the 993 million in profits of the third quarter (925 million euros). euro).
ArcelorMittal, the world’s leading steel producer, took a series of “mitigating actions” in the second half of the year to deal with reduced deliveries and reserves and higher energy costs stemming from the war in Ukraine.
A situation that led the company to cut capacity and fixed costs and reduce its consumption of European gas by 30%.
“Despite the challenges that arose as the year progressed, our full-year results demonstrate the benefits of our strengthened asset portfolio,” Group CEO Aditya Mittal explained in a statement.
For its part, the gross operating result (EBITDA) of the Luxembourg-based group stood at 14,161 million dollars (13,195 million euros) at the end of December, 27% less than in the same period of 2021.
On the contrary, sales increased by 4% year-on-year, to 79,844 million dollars (74,403 million euros) in 2022.
In the fourth quarter, EBITDA stood at 1,258 million dollars (1,172 million euros), 75% less than the 5,052 million registered the previous year (4,707 million euros), while sales fell 18% up to 16,891 million dollars (15,746 million euros).
At the financial level, the company’s net debt amounted to 2,236 million dollars (2,084 million euros) at the end of December, below the 3,927 million dollars (3,660 million euros) that it touched at the end of September.
Share buybacks completed in 2022 represented 11% of diluted capital and brought total purchases since September 2020 to 30%, at an average price per share of €24.34.
The outlook is “favourable”
The CEO of the group explained that, despite the “challenges” of the geopolitical context, the “mitigating actions” that the company took in the second half of the year to adapt production levels and optimize energy consumption have made it possible to add “resilience to business.”
“Our delivery of consistently positive free cash flow and balance sheet strength have enabled us to grow and develop the business, capturing growth opportunities in faster growing markets while advancing our ambition to be a leading producer of low carbon steel,” he said in the statement.
The outlook for the future is favorable for the company, since according to Mittal, the reduction of customer inventories that the company observed in the second half of 2022 “has reached its point” has reached its peak, which supports the apparent steel consumption and steel differentials.”
The company expects global steel consumption, with the exception of China, to increase by 2-3% in 2023 and its steel deliveries to increase by about 5% compared to last year.
Despite the fact that geopolitical uncertainty remains high, the CEO assured that the group has the capacity to “successfully execute” its strategy of growth, decarbonization and sustainable profitability in all aspects of the cycle. EFE