Construction began on a factory for the production of steel stock for construction by the Russian firm Mera-Stal and the Italian Danieli. The factory will go up in the industrial area on a 13.5-hectare lot in Kolpino in the outskirts of St. Petersburg. The government authorities have dubbed the project one “of strategic importance” for the city. The factory will employ the Endless Casting Rolling (ECR) system applied by Danieli at some of the most advanced production sites in the world, which is an uninterrupted process from liquid steel to finished product allowing for a notable savings in production costs. The factory, which should be completed within the second quarter of 2017, will be able to produce 350,000 tonnes of structural steel annually, thereby covering 40% of local market demand.