The company has suspended production from December 25 until January 5 and sent some 1,500 of its more than 3,000 employees in technical unemployment, paying them 75 percent of wages. The plant resumed activity on January 12.

The company reported a net profit of 106.33 million lei last year, a four-fold boost on 2007. Business advanced to 1.1 billion lei, exceeding by 36.7 percent the level of the previous year.

Mechel Targoviste has a share capital of 172.13 million lei divided into 68.85 million shares at a face value of 2.50 lei.

The majority shareholder, Russia's Mechel International Holdings AG, controls 86.60 percent of the company. Financial company SIF Oltenia (SIF5) owns an 8.92 percent stake and the state assets recovery body (AVAS) has a 4.05 percent stake.