JSW Steel announced on Thursday a proposal to put up to $500 million into Acero Junction, Inc.
Lawmakers said this is great news because it’s a step forward in putting America back in the forefront of steel production.
“We’ve got a ready and able work force there, steel workers,” said Representative Bill Johnson (R- Ohio 6th District).”This is steel country along the Ohio River.”
The investment by JSW Steel could make that statement even more true.
“It’s just a testimony that companies are looking to invest in Eastern and Southeastern Ohio,” Johnson continued. “We’ve got a wealth of readily available, affordable energy and we’ve got a work force that’s ready to go so that’s good news.”
India’s leading steel company would put the money into the existing plant in two phases.
The first $250 million will revamp and restart the arc furnace and slab caster and modernize the hot strip mill.
“The jobs that are gonna be created, the jobs that are gonna be saved, putting America back into production where steel is concerned, that’s a big deal,” said Johnson.
Mingo Mayor Ed Fithen told 7News that the proposal has brightened up the village and it’s all people want to talk about.
He also said every time he hears news like this he becomes more confident that improvements will happen and excited for job growth.
Senator Sherrod Brown (D – Ohio) has said he’s supporting President Donald Trump’s tariffs on steel and hopes that money goes in to the renovation of mills across the country, similar to the proposal in Mingo Junction.
“I want to make sure these tariffs are aimed at those countries that have done the damage to us and those countries that are serial cheaters in the world economy. That would be principally China,” he explained.
Congressman Jim Renacci (R – 16th District), who is also running for U.S. Senate released the following statement on Thursday:
“Today’s announcement is great news for the people of Ohio! One of the reasons I supported President Trump in 2016 was because of his promise to hold China accountable for their unfair trade practices – and now we are seeing first-hand the positive results of his work.”
Ohio State Senator Frank Hoagland also feels the president’s actions are benefiting steel. He said in a statement:
“This week’s announcement by JSW Steel means more jobs, more economic development and more opportunity for southeast Ohio. We are seeing first-hand the impact the Trump administration, combined with the Ohio Senate’s policies reducing regulatory red tape, are having on our state’s manufacturing jobs. Alongside our higher education partners, we remain committed to providing state-of-the-art job training opportunities that ensure our workforce is equipped to fill and thrive in these careers. I look forward to seeing the results of this investment in our region, it’s clear to me its best days are yet to come.”
Hoagland also said that the investment would created 300 new, permanent jobs.
Phase two of this proposed project at Acero Junction could be related to those tariffs.
JSW Steel said in its announcement that depending upon the economy and market conditions, they would possibly spend another $250 million to add an additional electric arc furnace and manufacturing equipment to make the Mingo Junction facility a fully integrated unit.
This would take the company’s overall investment in the United States to $1 billion.