KUN0019 4 GEN 0243 KUWAIT /KUNA-NXC6 IND-KUWAIT-STEEL-PRODUCTION United Steel Industries covers Kuwait's demand for steel -- Chairman KUWAIT, Feb 6 (KUNA) -- Following recent company expansions, the United Steel Industries Company has increased its production capacity of reinforced steel to 800,000 tons per year, a company executive said. Company Chairman Awwad Al-Khaldi told KUNA, over the next two years the company has a plan to increase output of different grades and sizes of steel on demand in Kuwait to one million tons. On recent reports of possible shortages in local steel supplies, Al-Khaldi said, the company's current production levels cover Kuwait's demand, including that for the government's pending housing projects. Their production levels also cover the private sector's needs, he said. In fact the company is exporting the excess steel to neighboring countries, Al-Khaldi stressed. Steel prices are subject to fluctuations as the materials needed to manufacture the product are imported. Prices at the world markets are increasing, which affects the pricing of the products locally, the chairman said. The company, subsidized by the Public Industry Authority, is currently building a manufacturing plant for materials in Kuwait, which should keep prices away from too much tug and pull of international fluctuations. The company is interested in keeping its products available on the market at competitive prices, Al-Khaldi said.(end) amf.aa.go KUNA 061230 Feb 07NNNN