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Evraz Plc (EVR)

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Thursday 16 April, 2020

Evraz Plc

Update on COVID-19

RNS Number : 9171J
Evraz Plc
16 April 2020
 

Update on COVID-19

 

16 April 2020 - EVRAZ plc ("EVRAZ or the "Group") today announces an update on the impact of COVID-19 on its business .

Group focus and priorities

The Group is closely monitoring the development of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on our employees, our operations and the broader stakeholder base. EVRAZ's immediate focus is on doing everything in its power to protect the lives and health of our employees and minimise the negative impact on our facilities and the communities in which we operate.

During and since March 2020, in response to the coronavirus pandemic the Group has introduced additional safety measures to protect its people and ensure continued operations.

These include:

· Significant reduction of domestic and cancellation of overseas business travel;

· Two-week isolation, with full salary, for all employees returning from trips abroad, either personal or work-related;

· Enabling remote working, provision of additional personal protection equipment for employees who must come to work, including eye protectors, respirators and gloves;

· Installation of thermal imaging devices and pyrometers at the entrances to our facilities to monitor people's temperatures;

· Elimination to the extent possible of large gatherings (with social distancing when they must take place), and cancellation of all major corporate, sporting and entertainment events;

· Increase of supplies of antiseptic and disinfectant products in communal areas, regular sanitation of facilities and transport;

· Campaigns to raise awareness among employees and contractors on behavioural features , social distancing and personal protection.

The Group is monitoring the spread of coronavirus and working with healthcare facilities and insurance organisations to take proactive decisions aimed at safeguarding its employees and their families. Currently there are no confirmed COVID-19 cases in EVRAZ.

Update on our operations and outlook  

The Group remains closely focused on its operations, including logistics, supply and technological processes. At present, EVRAZ is facing no significant issues with the production or supply of raw materials and other goods. Shipments continue, and raw material deliveries to enterprises are stable.

However, in the near term, we expect domestic steel demand to fall due to the significant economic down-turn that the restrictions imposed due to COVID-2019 are causing worldwide, including in Russia. This will, no doubt, affect firstly our construction products sales and then our railway products sales, to a slightly lesser extent.

We expect the impact on exports to be less significant. This is due to the recent rouble devaluation and EVRAZ's ability to redirect steel from domestic sales to export markets.

While the impact on the Group has been limited so far, we are likely to experience challenges in the near term. While our enterprises have been operating at full capacity, the situation is likely to be more complex in May and June. In the light of this, EVRAZ is working on a comprehensive package of optimisation measures that we expect to partially mitigate these negative effects.

Our financial position

The Group remains well capitalised with a strong liquidity cushion.

As at 31 December 2019, our net debt amounted to US$3,445 million. This reflected cash of US$1,423 million. Short-term loans and the current portion of long-term loans stood at US$140 million. Total scheduled debt maturities during 2020 will amount to no more thanUS$52 million.

In March 2020, EVRAZ paid interim dividends to its shareholders amounting to US$580.8 million, US$0.40 per share.

In addition, also in March 2020, EVRAZ signed a US$750 million 5-year committed syndicated unsecured credit facility. This facility was arranged and fully underwritten by a group of 10 international banks and is available for drawing until 18 March 2021. The proceeds of the facility will be used for general corporate purposes, including refinancing of the public debt maturities upcoming in Q1 2021.  

In March and April, the Group also added RUB20 billion to its cash cushion by utilisation of its committed and uncommitted credit lines in Russia,   due 2023.

The first sizeable maturities are due in Q1 2021 which should be comfortably covered by our existing cash balances   and committed credit facilities.

Despite Covid-19 related challenges and market downturns, EVRAZ remains committed to its long-term strategic goals, sustainability principles and high standards of corporate governance and control.

 

For more information, please contact :

 

Investor Relations

Tel : +7 495 232 1370

Email: ir @ evraz . com

 

Media Relations

Tel : +7 495 937 6871

Email: media @ evraz . com

 

 


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