Egypt’s Industrial Investment Company Steel (IIC Steel) has awarded the local Hassan Allam Construction (HAC) the contract to build a steel rolling mill and meltshop at Beni Sueif in the North African state.

The complex will use technology provided by Italy’s Danieli and will produce 1 million tonnes-a-year of rebar and billets when construction and commissioning are completed.

Work is expected to start at the complex in December 2012 and the work schedule is planned to take 21 months to complete. The value of the deal was not disclosed, but similar sized plants elsewhere in the Middle East typically cost upwards of $600m.

IIC Steel is one of Egypt’s largest steel producers. It is expected the addition of the plant will boost the company’s share of the market to 20 per cent.

The company is a joint venture between IIC Steel and an unnamed Qatari investment vehicle.