At least 74 people will be laid off at TMK-IPSCO, a welded pipe mill in Blytheville. The company was acquired by Tenaris earlier this month and the move was expected.
Operations at the plant will be suspended as of Thursday (Jan. 30). A partial crew will remain at the facility to keep it in operational order. When or if the plant will be re-opened has not been released.
“Following the decision and WARN communication issued by TMK, operations at the Blytheville IPSCO facility have been suspended as of Jan. 30. A decision to reopen the facility will be guided by a more favorable market outlook and an increase in customer demand,” according to a Tenaris Hickman statement on the layoff.
The layoff comes after Tenaris announced in November that it laid off about 100 workers at its Hickman plant. That facility produces metal tubing that is primarily used in the oil and gas industry.
“Drilling activity in the oil and [natural] gas market has been steadily declining. This has had a direct impact on tubulars, which has been further compounded by a significant level of unfairly traded OCTG imports, despite the low demand,” Tenaris spokeswoman Carolina Mendoza said in a statement at the time. “As a result of the slowdown, we have made the difficult decision to lay off just over 90 employees at our welded pipe facility in Hickman, Arkansas.”
Tenaris has operated its Hickman facility for 26 years, according to the company. Since 2006, it has invested $260 million in the plant.