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    Mechel Announces Launch of an Upgraded Medium-Section Mill at Mechel Targoviste
    9/5/2008
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    MTL 20.96, -2.34, -10.0%) , one of the leading Russian mining and metals companies, announces the launch of a medium-section mill at its Mechel Targoviste facility (Targoviste, Romania) following the execution of fundamental renovations.
    Implementation of this project was performed within the scope of an extensive program for modernization of production at Mechel Targoviste, which has been consistently carried out at the facility. This program includes the upgrade of a heat-treatment furnace and the mill itself. Investment in equipment upgrading in facility shop for medium-section rolled products amounted to 8.7 million euros ($12.8 million). The works were performed to improve finished product quality and to significantly reduce production costs.
    Originally, the medium-section mill was designed for product dimensions from 80.80 mm to 140.140 mm. Following the modernization program, the mill is now also capable of rolling products with dimensions of 150.180 mm produced by a continuous-casting machine that was installed in the facility in March of 2007. Transition to these new product dimensions resulted in an increase in roll train efficiency and enhanced shrinkage to obtain the desired structure of finished products. Upgrading will also allow Mechel Targoviste to reduce natural gas consumption and to significantly improve the quality of its end products.
    Two additional mill stands were mounted on the mill. In addition, new equipment for water descaling, a product tipping device and new mill rolls were installed. Installations performed on the mill's heat-treatment furnace include new equipment for automation of the product heat-treatment, product-weighting system, the hydraulic system for the furnace floor and product input and output systems, and new system of furnace burners and combustion.
    The Company expects the cost savings from the renovation to total approximately 2.3 million euros per year ($3.4 million).
    The upgraded equipment launch in the rolling-mill shop was timed to Metallurgist Day, celebrated in Romania annually on the second Saturday of August.
    Vladimir Polin, Chief Executive Officer of Mechel Management Company OOO, commented: "The completion of this project continues the series of Mechel investment projects targeted at fundamental modernization of the group's steel and rolling production assets in Romania. In particular, in Mechel Targoviste a new arc furnace and a new continuous-casting machine were launched in 2006 and 2007 respectively. These efforts improve the mill's production efficiency and as a result its financial strength. Mechel management has again demonstrated the ability to transform an older, inefficient asset and adapt it to a highly competitive market. In Romania, Mechel owns four steel facilities, and in each of these the Company is actively working to modernize the equipment and enhance operational efficiency."
    Mechel is one of the leading Russian companies. Its business includes three segments: mining, steel, and power. Mechel unites producers of coal, iron ore concentrate, nickel, steel, rolled products, hardware, heat and electric power. Mechel products are marketed domestically and internationally.
    Some of the information in this press release may contain projections or other forward-looking statements regarding future events or the future financial performance of Mechel, as defined in the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. We wish to caution you that these statements are only predictions and that actual events or results may differ materially. We do not intend to update these statements. We refer you to the documents Mechel files from time to time with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including our Form 20-F. These documents contain and identify important factors, including those contained in the section captioned "Risk Factors" and "Cautionary Note Regarding Forward- Looking Statements" in our Form 20-F, that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those contained in our projections or forward-looking statements, including, among others, the achievement of anticipated levels of profitability, growth, cost and synergy of our recent acquisitions, the impact of competitive pricing, the ability to obtain necessary regulatory approvals and licenses, the impact of developments in the Russian economic, political and legal environment, volatility in stock markets or in the price of our shares or ADRs, financial risk management and the impact of general business and global economic conditions.
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