REUTERS - Tata Steel Ltd said on Wednesday its Europe unit’s chief executive, Karl Koehler, is stepping down to take up a senior leadership position with a large, privately owned industrial company in Germany.
Koehler would be replaced by Hans Fischer, chief technical officer at Tata Steel Europe, effective March 1, the company said in a statement.
Koehler, who will also resign from the Tata Steel board, will remain available to Tata Steel for a short period in an advisory capacity, the steelmaker said.
Koushik Chatterjee, group executive director and a board member, will become Tata Steel’s executive director for Europe in addition to his current responsibilities, the company said.
The change in the top ranks of Britain’s largest steelmaker comes at a time when the steel industry has been reeling from falling prices and cheap imports.
The European Commission is scheduled to propose later this year whether to grant China market economy status, a move that critics say would give the country a license to dump unfairly cheap products in Europe and cost jobs.
Tata Steel announced last month that it would axe 1,050 jobs in the United Kingdom soon after European Union steel prices touched their lowest since 2004. That was the second round of job cuts for the company in six months.
Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy in Mumbai and Vidya L Nathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Jason Neely and Savio D'Souza