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Russia, the largest producer in the region, had its crude steel output slide by 3% year-on-year in the month to 6.05 million tonnes. The dynamics were in line with the fall of 3% in the country’s finished steel production in July.

Crude steel production in Ukraine, the region’s second-largest steelmaker, dropped by 24% year-on-year in July to 1.87 million tonnes.

The country’s steel mills produced 1.72 million tonnes of rolled steel last month, down by 22% year-on-year, according to national steelmakers’ union Metallurgprom.

Mlitary action in the east of the country that escalated in August last year disrupted production and raw materials supplies in Ukraine. The local steel industry has partially recovered since then, but has not yet returned to its previous levels.

Crude steel output in Kazakhstan fell by 27% year-on-year in July to 229,000 tonnes, according to Worldsteel.

ArcelorMittal Kazakhstan’s Temirtau plant had one of its three operating blast furnaces out of action for the whole of July as it was undergoing repair works following a fire.

The affected furnace has capacity to produce 1.3 million tpy of pig iron.

The Temirtau plant is currently operating three BFs, which together make 300,000 tonnes per month of pig iron. The fourth BF at the mill was halted in May to undergo maintenance work and is scheduled for a restart in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Steel production in Belarus was 221,000 tonnes in July, almost flat compared with 223,000 tonnes in the corresponding period last year, according to Worldsteel.