Responsible sourcing

SSAB has approximately 20,000 suppliers globally. The input materials needed to make iron and steel account for SSAB’s most significant purchases. Suppliers must comply both with SSAB’s own standards and with international social and environmental guidelines in order to remain qualified suppliers for SSAB.

Efficient and responsible sourcing of goods and services

SSAB buys input materials, products and services in most of the countries in which we operate. These materials and services range from input goods like scrap, iron ore, coal and alloys to gas, refractories, zinc, paint, maintenance services and spare parts. SSAB spends more than SEK 40 billion annually on external purchases.

At SSAB, sustainability is an integrated aspect of sourcing operations and supply chain management. We assess suppliers on the basis of quality, delivery reliability, cost and sustainability.

sourcing map


Where SSAB sources its input materials
Iron ore pellets  Sweden, Russia
Metallurgical coal Australia, USA, Canada, Russia
Scrap USA, Sweden, Finland, Russia
Limestone Sweden, Norway, France, Spain
Alloys Brazil, Russia, China, South Korea, Chile, USA etc. 


Incorporating sustainability in sourcing

SSAB has a Supplier Sustainability Policy based on the UN Global Compact principles to which SSAB is a signatory. The purpose of the policy is to ensure that SSAB collaborates with suppliers who share our sustainability values. 

The Supplier Sustainability Policy applies to all suppliers providing products and/or services to any SSAB group company and includes requirements on labor and human rights, health and safety, anti-corruption and the environment. In the policy, SSAB also reserves the right to conduct reviews of our direct suppliers or on-site audits to ensure compliance with the policy. All new or updated contracts as from 2017 refer to the Supplier Sustainability Policy, and the same reference is included in our purchase orders.

Supplier Sustainability Policy

Identification and evaluation of supplier risks

SSAB classifies our direct suppliers and assesses potential risks. For sustainability assessments we use Maplecroft´s risk indices for human rights, political and environmental risks per specific region. Corruption assessments are based on Transparency International´s Corruption Perceptions index.

Suppliers identified as medium- or high-risk suppliers must complete a self-assessment questionnaire containing questions about governance and their social conditions as well as environmental performance. Unsatisfactory answers are investigated and followed up.


Site visits and audits

SSAB also conducts regular visits to major suppliers around the world, including high-risk suppliers. Suppliers selected for site visits and third party audits are identified in the annual audit plan. Supplier selection is based on many criteria, including a pre-evaluation of the supplier’s social and environmental risk profile taking into consideration also geographic location and product category.

On these visits, purchasers and specialist functions visit production sites and conduct supplier inspections. SSAB has on-site protocols in place and the procurement organization has been trained to evaluate information about the supplier’s social and environmental performance gathered during site visits.


HSEQ cluster for joint evaluations of contractors

SSAB is member of an HSEQ (health, safety, environment and quality) cluster for common evaluations of contractors. Several of SSAB´s contractors working on SSAB´s sites are audited through this cluster by a third party every year.


Monitoring raw material traders

SSAB also sources alloys, coal and coke and refractories through agents and traders. SSAB requires these suppliers to monitor their sources for sustainability commitment and we have an adapted assessment process where they have to declare how they monitor social and environmental compliance in their supply chain.


Actions against modern slavery

SSAB supports and respects internationally proclaimed human rights and has taken a variety of actions to verify the absence of child labor, forced labor, slavery and human trafficking in our supply chain. These actions include sustainability principles for our suppliers, sustainability risk assessments, site visits and audits and training of our employees. SSAB will strengthen the procurement process for certain commodities in order to increase focus on Modern slavery.

SSAB's Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement (link to SSAB UK website)


No conflict minerals in SSAB's steel

“Conflict minerals” is a term used for minerals derived from conflict ridden regions or countries where the mining of certain minerals risks contributing to, or financing, continued conflict and violation of human rights. SSAB does not use conflict minerals (including gold, tin, tungsten and tantalum) and, upon request, provides customers with certification affirming this.


What can suppliers expect from SSAB?

  • SSAB promotes long-term sustainable development and is a signatory to UN`s Global Compact and actively supports the ten principles covering human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption
  • SSAB has implemented certain governing principles for our suppliers based on UN´s Global compact principles. These principles are included in our Supplier sustainability policy
  • The Supplier Sustainability Policy applies to all suppliers providing products and/or services to any SSAB Group Company
  • We seek to work with companies who contribute to a sustainable development and are ethically, socially, environmentally and economically responsible
  • SSAB expects the supplier to monitor its own suppliers in order to ensure commitment to Environmental and social responsibility
global compact logo
Viikki Ship

SSAB and Aspo ESL Shipping signed a long-term agreement for raw material sea transport to reduce CO2 emissions

SSAB needs volume flexibility for key input materials to meet fluctuations in the blast furnace consumption of these materials. SSAB’s vision of a stronger, lighter and more sustainable world, encourages the pursuit of solutions to limit environmental impacts, where sea transport is of significant importance.

SSAB and Aspo Group’s ESL Shipping Ltd signed a long-term frame agreement covering sea freight for SSAB’s inbound raw material sea transport within the Baltic Sea and from the North Sea. The agreement secures deliveries of coking coal, iron ore and PCI coal to SSAB’s coking plants and blast furnaces in Raahe, Luleå and Oxelösund. The new combined sea freight agreement will result in a reduction of more than 50% in CO2 emissions per tonne of cargo transported compared to present vessels. Besides these environmental benefits, the cost savings provided by new technology will also allow better profitability. The cost savings related to the agreement are part of SSAB’s synergy program announced in conjunction with the merger with Rautaruukki in 2014. The new agreement will result in ESL Shipping building two new, energy-efficient LNG-fueled ships. The two ships have been delivered in 2018 and are now fully operational.