In Venezuela, President Carlos Andres Perez has opened the fourth stage of the Orinoco steelworks in the south-east of the country.
GV TRAVELLING SHOT Steel plant
GV PAN Plant and electrical power station and chimneys (3 shots)
MV Plant constructors's board
LV INTERIOR President Carlos Andres Perez meeting plant officials
CU & MVs President Perez making speech as steel workers listen (5 shots)
GV PAN Furnaces and sheets of steel rolling out (2 shots)
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Background: In Venezuela, President Carlos Andres Perez has opened the fourth stage of the Orinoco steelworks in the south-east of the country. It is the latest step in the government's plan to establish its own manufacturing industries and become self-sufficient is steel.
SYNOPSIS: The steelworks are operated by the state-owned Siderurgica de Orinoco (Sidor). Construction teams have been working on the expansion programme for four years.
Steel in the Sidor works is smelted using an electric arc furnace. The works use iron-ore from local state-owned mines. The new facilities available include continuous casting units to produce rods and wire and an expansion of the present hot and cold rolling mills. The plant now employs twenty thousand people.
The expansion project has cost over three and a half billion U.S. dollars. It will quadruple the capacity of the plant to five million tonnes.
President Perez is closely identified with the expansion of steelmaking throughout Venezuela and the steelworks project in Zuila, in the north-west of the country, is another example of his ambitious plan to reshape the country's economy and promote regional autonomy. Planned industrialisation in the next twenty years will lead to a huge increase in the demand for steel. New Steelworks and Venezuela's large reserves of iron ore will allow that demand to be met with home-produced steel. President Perez told steelworker the inauguration of the Sidor plant was a "historic moment, and a giant step forward on the road to economic independence."
Venezuela's main source of revenue is oil, but reserves will last less than twenty years. When the oil runs out, the diversification of industry that the Sidor plant represents will play an even greater part in the Venezuelan economy.