Currently, world ferrochrome production is around 4.4 million tons/year and 70 percent of the produced ferrochrome is used in stainless steel production. Therefore, the ferrochrome market varies primarily based on activity in the stainless steel industry.

While ferrochrome produced in our country constituted 1.9 percent of world production in 1995, this rate increased to 2.5 percent in 1998. Once our country reaches full capacity in high-carbon ferrochrome production, it will have a share of approximately 4 percent in world ferrochrome production. The main reason behind this increase is the developments in stainless steel production technology. During this period, the use of argon-oxygen-decarburization (AOD), ASEA (name of the company that developed the process) and similar processes became widespread, especially in steel production.

While the USA and Japan, the two largest consumer countries in the western world in the 1970s, also produced approximately 45% of the world’s ferrochrome production, today their share in production has fallen below 5%. In the same period, the production of chromite producing countries in the developing countries group, especially the South African Republic, increased rapidly.

Although the total share of developed countries in world ferrochrome production is constantly decreasing, their investments to increase stainless steel production continue.

Our country’s chromite ores are of high quality and high grade. Its capacity was increased from 60,000 tons/year to 161,500 tons/year and its silicoferrochrome capacity was increased to 7,300 tons/year. The average capacity utilization rate (CUR) in Low Carbon ferrochrome production was 90 percent, and the average CUR in High carbon ferrochrome production was 70 percent.

Since the ferrochrome production capacity is very low in stainless steel casting production in Turkey, its domestic consumption is very limited. Therefore, current production capacity is mainly export-oriented. Our country’s most important export markets for ferrochrome products are the USA, EU countries and Japan.

However, Elazığ Ferrochrome Facilities has stopped production for the last two years due to the increase in existing ferrochrome stocks and was put into the privatization process last year. Rising stocks and the privatization process will cause damage to our facilities. Our quality and high grade Chromite reserves and Ferrochrome production are an opportunity for our country, iron, steel and stainless steel industry.

In addition, considering the increase in the production of ferroalloys used in stainless steel production every year, it is also important to carry out studies on the establishment of a stainless steel facility.