Tinplate Business Training for Overseas Staff

Jan 16, 2020

~Strengthening gloabal cooperation and searching for new business opportunities~

The Tinplate Sales Department in the Steel Division of Nippon Steel Trading Corporation (hereafter “NST”) gathered together 13 local staff members of NST and the Mitsui & Co. Group who work in 10 countries located in North and Central America, Taiwan, ASEAN, Oceania, the Middle East, and Europe on November 18 at the Tokyo Head Office (Minato-ku, Tokyo) to conduct tinplate business training as part of our programs to strengthen overseas business. Here we will introduce some of the contents that were covered at this training.

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Members of the Tinplate Export Team

〇 What is tinplate??

Tinplate is thin steel plate with a surface coating of metallic tin, and is used primarily for food products and beverages. It is said that its origins can be traced back to medieval Europe, and tinplate cans were first used for food storage by the French leader Napoleon during his war expeditions.

Tinplate is known for its high level of safety, and even if the tin in the surface coating enters the food, it is harmless to the human body. Because the surface is smooth and attractive, and is easy to paint or print on, it is a material with exceptional design performance. It also features a range of other characteristics, including high strength that makes it tough to break even when thin, as well as good corrosion resistance.
At present, global demand for tinplate is around 16 million tons, and is expected to continue growing at a rate of 2 – 3% annually as the global population expands.

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Tinplate before being made into a can
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Transformed into a wide variety of food cans

〇 Gloabal tinplate business of the Nippon Steel Trading Group

In addition to domestic business supplying tinplate to can manufacturers and othercompanies in Japan, the NST Tinplate Sales Department also operates a global
trading business that supplies tinplate to can manufacturers and food productmanufacturers in around 40 countries worldwide. The export destinations span nearly
the entire globe ranging from North, Central, and South America to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, all of Asia including India, and Oceania.
This global business includes product supply to a food product manufacturer in the Middle East nation of Jordan, where it is used for cans that are provided to refugee camps.

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〇 Gaining attention as an eco-friendly material

Due to issues such as the problem of microplastic pollution and import restrictions on waste plastic in Southeast Asian nations, there has been a worldwide movement toward reducing the use of plastic bottles and other containers in recent years. Under these conditions, steel tinplate cans are gaining attention as an eco-friendly material that can help solve environmental problems due to its excellent recyclability that allows it to be reborn as a resource time and time again.

As part of activities aimed at achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in addition to tinplate as a green packaging material, NST is also working to strengthen its supply of other environmentally friendly materials such as nickel plated steel sheet that is used in the rechargeable batteries that are at the heart of electric vehicles, as well as aluminum and plastic. Through new programs including proposals for cooperative material supply involving the overseas sites of the Mitsui & Co. Group and the Functional Materials Department of the NST Industrial Supply & Infrastructure Division, we are aiming to create businesses that contribute to society and the environment.

〇 Aiming for improved synergistic effects through international communication at training events

Through this training, participants not only learned about tinplate products and markets, but also learned about packaging materials from a global perspective and shared sales expansion strategies for future global business throughout the Group. All of the training lectures were conducted in English and involved scenes of lively discussion, making them an opportunity to construct partnerships that transcend national borders. Many of the staff expressed the opinion that while they ordinarily focus mainly on discussing business strategies at individual sites, this training was very good because it allowed them to share strategies within the entire group.

Previously the primary flow of information was from Japan to each of the individual sites overseas, however we intend to use this training as an opportunity to energize communication among the local staff at overseas sites who rarely interacted before, aiming to increase opportunities to create new businesses and further expand the scale of our business.

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<Company profile>

Nippon Steel Trading Corporation

Founded:        August 1977

Representative:  Yasumitsu Saeki

Address:         5-27, Akasaka 8-chome, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-8527

Line of business: Marketing and import/export of steel, industrial supply and infrastructure, textiles, foodstuffs and others

URL:            https://www.nst.nipponsteel.com/

* Inquiries regarding this release:

  Corporate Communications Section   
  General Affairs & Corporate Communications Department   
  Nippon Steel Trading Corporation

  TEL: +81-3-5412-5003