The Linde Group has been awarded a contract by Russian mining and metallurgy giant Metalloinvest for the long-term supply of oxygen, nitrogen and argon to Ural Steel (part of Metalloinvest).

The Tier One corporation is to invest around €50m into a new state-of-the-art air separation unit (ASU) and operate the unit at the steel works in Novotroitsk, Russia. Ural Steel is an integrated company that operates blast furnace, steelmaking and metal rolling facilities.

“We are delighted that Metalloinvest, one of Russia’s integrated steel producers, entrusted us with this important project. The successful completion of the new ASU will pave the way for further growth and mutual benefit. We will make use of our global expertise and experience to produce a new reference unit in Russia in the field of oxygen production,” stated Professor Dr. Aldo Belloni, CEO of Linde AG.

Evgeny Maslov, Ural Steel Managing Director, added, “We are confident that cooperation with Linde, the world technology leader in the field of industrial gases and engineering, will ensure reliable operation of the ASU after its commissioning in 2021.”

According to gasworld’s Business Analyst Bradley Lye, “In 2017 Russia boasted an estimated total market value of just over $640m. There was a sizeable portion of the market pertaining to independent producers and distributors (over 63%), but Linde was the second largest tier one company active in the country, with an estimated market share of $69.9m.”