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Nippon Steel Corporation, Sumitomo Metal Industries and Kobe Steel Considering Measures to Further Expand and Enhance Ongoing Cooperation.

Tokyo, Japan, Oct 30, 2007 - (JCN Newswire) - Nippon Steel Corporation (TSE: 5401) Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd. (TSE: 5405) and Kobe Steel, Ltd. (TSE: 5406) have to date realized substantial benefits from ongoing collaborative efforts. These include Nippon Steel and Kobe Steel supplying hot-rolled steel coils to Sumitomo Metals, the joint use of iron- and steel-making facilities at Sumitomo Metals' Wakayama Steel Works, integration of some of their businesses and affiliates, and reciprocal production support among the three companies. In view of these benefits, the three companies have decided to study the following additional measures to further expand and enhance their cooperative ties.

1. Three Companies Studying Ways to Expand Joint Use of Iron- and Steel-making Facilities at Sumitomo Metals' Wakayama Steel Works as a Source of High Grade Steel.

Sumitomo Metals has decided on basic policies relating to the construction of a new No. 2 Blast Furnace at its Wakayama Steel Works, with the aim of bringing the new furnace on stream in the 2nd half of the fiscal year ending March 31, 2013. This project involves renewal of the current No. 5 Blast Furnace (which will be renamed the new No. 2 Blast Furnace) and expansion of steel-making facilities among other measures. It follows the decision to build a new No. 1 Blast Furnace (renewal of the current No. 4 Blast Furnace) at Wakayama Steel Works, which is scheduled to come on stream in June 2009. In response, Nippon Steel, Sumitomo Metals, and Kobe Steel have decided to study ways to expand the effective use of these new iron- and steel-making facilities jointly as a source of high grade steel.

2. Nippon Steel and Sumitomo Metals Studying Two-way Collaborative Measures

(a) Study on ways to secure capacity for high-grade sheet products, based on the measures outlined in 1. above.

i) Study on Sumitomo Metals' increased use of hot-rolling capacity of the Nippon Steel Group.

- The two companies will study an integrated approach that will combine the use of the hot-rolling capacity of the Nippon Steel Group with the downstream rolling facilities at Sumitomo Metals' Wakayama Steel Works in processing Sumitomo Metals' high grade steel slabs.

ii) Study on the Nippon Steel Group's increased use of rolling capacity for sheet products at Sumitomo Metals' Wakayama Steel Works

(b) Study on effective use of facilities at Sumitomo Metals (Naoetsu), Ltd.

i) Study on an integrated approach that will combine the use of Nippon Steel's hot-rolling capacity with Sumitomo Metals (Naoetsu)'s downstream rolling facilities in processing nickel-based, stainless steel slabs from Sumitomo Metals' Wakayama Steel Works

ii) Study on the Nippon Steel Group's use of the rolling capacity at Sumitomo Metals (Naoetsu)

3. Nippon Steel and Kobe Steel Studying Two-way Collaborative Measures

(a) Study on the production and use of direct reduced iron as well as the recycling of dust generated by blast furnaces and basic oxygen furnaces.

(b) Study on sintering technology as well as application technology for higher-quality pellets for blast furnaces, as part of the technology exchange between the two companies' iron-making departments.

4. Sumitomo Metals and Kobe Steel Studying Two-way Collaborative Measures

(a) Study on an alliance between their high-strength steel bolts businesses.

(b) Study on Sumitomo Metals' consigning production of stainless steel boiler tubes to the Kobe Steel Group.

(c) Study on expansion of Sumitomo Metals' consigning titanium hot rolling to Kobe Steel.

The three companies have also decided to commence studies on additional cross-purchases of shares for the purpose of ensuring the smooth and steady examination and implementation of the aforementioned collaborative measures.

About Kobe Steel, Ltd.

Kobe Steel is one of Japan's top manufacturers of aluminum and copper products. It is also a leading steelmaker in Japan. Other businesses include welding consumables, industrial machinery, engineering, construction equipment, and electronic materials. More information is available at: www.kobelco.co.jp

About Nippon Steel Corporation

Nippon Steel Corporation (TSE: 5401) is one of the largest manufacturer and marketer of steel products in the world. The company is expanding into new fields such as electronics, new materials and urban development. Operations are carried out through the Steelmaking/Steel Fabrication Division, Engineering/Construction Division, Urban Development Division, Chemicals/Nonferrous Materials Division, and Electronics/Information Systems Division. For more information, please visit www.nsc.co.jp.

About Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.

Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd. (TSE: 5405) was established in 1949 and is a leading diversified manufacturer of steel products and a distinguished supplier of construction, plant and system engineering services. The company's principal activities are carried out through the Steel Products Division, Engineering Division, Electronics and Information Services Division. For more nformation, please visit www.sumitomometals.co.jp.

Source: Kobe Steel, Ltd.Nippon Steel CorporationSumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.

Contact:
Nippon Steel Corporation
Public Relations Center
+81-3-3275-5021/23

Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd.
Public Relations Group, Public Relations and IR Dept.
+81-3-4416-6115

Kobe Steel, Ltd.
Publicity Group, Secretariat and Publicity Dept.
+81-3-5739-6010


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Publication:JCN Newswires
Geographic Code:9JAPA
Date:Oct 30, 2007
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