20-F 1 MainDocument.htm FORM 20-F

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 20-F

 

(Mark One)

 Registration statement pursuant to Section 12(b) or 12(g) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

or

 Annual report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020

or

 Transition report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

or

 Shell company report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

Commission file number: 001-31518

 

TENARIS S.A.

(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)

 

N/A

(Translation of Registrant’s name into English)

Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)

26, Boulevard Royal4th Floor

L-2449 Luxembourg

(Address of principal executive offices)

Javier Cayzac

26, Boulevard Royal4th Floor

L-2449 Luxembourg

Tel. + (352) 26 47 89 78, Fax. + (352) 26 47 89 79, e-mail: investors@tenaris.com

(Name, Telephone, E-Mail and/or Facsimile number and Address of Company Contact Person)

 


Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

 

 


 

Title of Each Class  


Name of Each Exchange On Which Registered  

American Depositary Shares


New York Stock Exchange

Ordinary Shares, par value $1.00 per share


New York Stock Exchange*

 

* Ordinary shares of Tenaris S.A. are not directly listed for trading but only in connection with the registration of American Depositary Shares which are evidenced by American Depositary Receipts.

 

Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:

None

Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act:

None

 

Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or common stock as of the close of the period covered by the annual report.

1,180,536,830 ordinary shares, par value $1.00 per share

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.    Yes      No  

If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.    Yes      No  

Note – checking the box above will not relieve any registrant required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 from their obligations under those Sections.

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.   Yes      No  

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Website, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).    Yes      No  

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act (Check one):

 

 

 

 

Large accelerated filer  

Accelerated Filer  

                   Non-accelerated filer   

 

 

Emerging growth company  

If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards† provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.                                     

† The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.


Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.

Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing:

 

 

 

 

U.S. GAAP  

International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board 

 Other   

If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow.    Item 17      Item 18  

If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).    Yes      No  

Please send copies of notices and communications from the Securities and Exchange Commission to:

 

 

 

Diego E. Parise

Mitrani, Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados

Bouchard 680, 13th Floor

(C1106ABJ) Buenos Aires, Argentina

(54 11) 4590-8600

Patrick S. Brown, Esq.

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP

1888 Century Park East

Los Angeles, California 90067-1725

 (310) 712-6600

 

 



TABLE OF CONTENTS



PART I
4



Item 1. Identity of Directors, Senior Management and Advisers 4

Item 2. Offer Statistics and Expected Timetable 4

Item 3. Key Information 5

Item 4. Information on the Company 18

Item 4A. Unresolved Staff Comments 47

Item 5. Operating and Financial Review and Prospects 47

Item 6. Directors, Senior Management and Employees 69

Item 7. Major Shareholders and Related Party Transactions 78

Item 8. Financial Information 81

Item 9. The Offer and Listing 85

Item 10. Additional Information 85

Item 11. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosure about Market Risk 97

Item 12. Description of Securities Other Than Equity Securities 100


PART II
101



Item 13. Defaults, Dividend Arrearages and Delinquencies 101

Item 14. Material Modifications to the Rights of Security Holders and Use of Proceeds 101

Item 15. Controls and Procedures 101

Item 16A. Audit Committee Financial Expert 102

Item 16B. Code of Ethics 103

Item 16C. Principal Accountant Fees and Services 103

Item 16D. Exemptions from the Listing Standards for Audit Committees 104

Item 16E. Purchases of Equity Securities by the Issuer and Affiliated Purchasers 104

Item 16F. Change in Registrant’s Certifying Accountant 105

Item 16G. Corporate Governance 105

Item 16H. Mine Safety Disclosure 107


PART III
108



Item 17. Financial Statements 108

Item 18. Financial Statements 108

Item 19. Exhibits 109



CERTAIN DEFINED TERMS

Unless otherwise specified or if the context so requires:

  • References in this annual report to “the Company” are exclusively to Tenaris S.A., a Luxembourg société anonyme.
  • References in this annual report to “Tenaris”, “we”, “us” or “our” are to Tenaris S.A. and its consolidated subsidiaries. See “II. Accounting Policies A. Basis of presentation” and “II. Accounting Policies B. Group accounting” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.
  • References in this annual report to “San Faustin” are to San Faustin S.A., a Luxembourg société anonyme and the Company’s controlling shareholder.
  • shares” refers to ordinary shares, par value $1.00, of the Company.
  • “ADSs” refers to the American Depositary Shares, which are evidenced by American Depositary Receipts, and represent two shares each.
  • “OCTG” refers to oil country tubular goods. See Item 4.B. “Information on the Company – Business Overview – Our Products”.
  • “tons” refers to metric tons; one metric ton is equal to 1,000 kilograms, 2,204.62 pounds, or 1.102 U.S. (short) tons.
  • “billion” refers to one thousand million, or 1,000,000,000.
  • “U.S. dollars”, “US$”, “USD” or “$” each refers to the United States dollar.
  • “EUR” refers to the Euro.
  • “BRL” refers to the Brazilian real.
  • “ARS” refers to the Argentine peso.

PRESENTATION OF CERTAIN FINANCIAL AND OTHER INFORMATION

Accounting Principles

We prepare our consolidated financial statements in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), and in accordance with IFRS, as adopted by the European Union. IFRS differs in certain significant aspects from generally accepted accounting principles in the United States, commonly referred to as U.S. GAAP. Additionally, this annual report includes certain non-IFRS alternative performance measures such as EBITDA, Net cash/debt position and Free Cash Flow. See Exhibit 7.2 for more details on these alternative performance measures.

We publish consolidated financial statements presented in increments of a thousand U.S. dollars. This annual report includes our audited consolidated financial statements for the years ended December 31, 2020, 2019 and 2018.

Rounding

Certain monetary amounts, percentages and other figures included in this annual report have been subject to rounding adjustments. Accordingly, figures shown as totals in certain tables may not be the arithmetic aggregation of the figures that precede them, and figures expressed as percentages in the text may not total 100% or, as applicable, when aggregated may not be the arithmetic aggregation of the percentages that precede them.

Our Internet Website is Not Part of this Annual Report

We maintain an Internet website at www.tenaris.com. Information contained in or otherwise accessible through our Internet website is not a part of this annual report. All references in this annual report to this Internet site are inactive textual references to these URLs, or “uniform resource locators” and are for informational reference only. We assume no responsibility for the information contained on our Internet website.


Industry Data

Unless otherwise indicated, industry data and statistics (including historical information, estimates or forecasts) in this annual report are contained in or derived from internal or industry sources believed by Tenaris to be reliable. Industry data and statistics are inherently predictive and are not necessarily reflective of actual industry conditions. Such statistics are based on market research, which itself is based on sampling and subjective judgments by both the researchers and the respondents, including judgments about what types of products and transactions should be included in the relevant market. In addition, the value of comparisons of statistics for different markets is limited by many factors, including that (i) the markets are defined differently, (ii) the underlying information was gathered by different methods and (iii) different assumptions were applied in compiling the data. Such data and statistics have not been independently verified, and the Company makes no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of such data or any assumptions relied upon therein.

CAUTIONARY STATEMENT CONCERNING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This annual report and any other oral or written statements made by us to the public may contain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of and subject to the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. This annual report contains forward-looking statements, including with respect to certain of our plans and current goals and expectations relating to Tenaris’s future financial condition and performance.

Sections of this annual report that by their nature contain forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, Item 3. “Key Information”, Item 4. “Information on the Company”, Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects”, Item 8. “Financial Information” and Item 11. “Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosure About Market Risk.

We use words and terms such as “aim”, “will likely result”, “will continue”, “contemplate”, “seek to”, “future”, “objective”, “goal”, “should”, “will pursue”, “anticipate”, “estimate”, “expect”, “project”, “intend”, “plan”, “believe” and words and terms of similar substance to identify forward-looking statements, but they are not the only way we identify such statements. All forward-looking statements are management’s present expectations of future events and are subject to a number of factors and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. These factors include the risks related to our business and industry discussed under Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors”, including among them, the following:

  • our ability to implement our business strategy or to grow through acquisitions, joint ventures and other investments;
  • the competitive environment in our business and our industry;
  • the impact of climate change legislations and increasing regulatory requirements aimed at lowering greenhouse gas emissions and severe weather conditions worldwide;
  • our ability to price our products and services in accordance with our strategy;
  • our ability to absorb cost increases and to secure supplies of essential raw materials and energy;
  • our ability to adjust fixed and semi-fixed costs to fluctuations in product demand;
  • trends in the levels of investment in oil and gas exploration and drilling worldwide;
  • the impact of a novel strain of coronavirus (“COVID-19”) crisis and other pandemics on the world’s economy, the energy sector in general, or our business and operations;
  • general macroeconomic, political, social and public health conditions and developments in the countries in which we operate or distribute pipes; and
  • changes to applicable laws and regulations, including the imposition of tariffs or quotas or other trade barriers.

By their nature, certain disclosures relating to these and other risks are only estimates and could be materially different from what actually occurs in the future. As a result, actual future gains or losses or other occurrences or developments that may affect our financial condition and results of operations could differ materially from those that have been estimated. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this annual report. Except as required by law, we are not under any obligation, and expressly disclaim any obligation to, update or alter any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Not applicable.

Not applicable. 


 

Item 3.  Key Information

A. Selected Financial Data

The selected consolidated financial data set forth below have been derived from our audited consolidated financial statements for each of the years and at the dates indicated therein. Our consolidated financial statements were prepared in accordance with IFRS, and were audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers, Société coopérative, Cabinet de révision agréé (“PwC Luxembourg”), an independent registered public accounting firm. PwC Luxembourg is a member firm of PwC International Limited (“PwC”). IFRS differs in certain significant aspects from U.S. GAAP.

For a discussion of the accounting principles affecting the financial information contained in this annual report, please see “Presentation of Certain Financial and Other Information – Accounting Principles.

 

Thousands of U.S. dollars (except number of
shares and per share amounts)

For the year ended December 31,

2020


2019


2018

 

 


 


 

Selected consolidated income statement data

 


 


 

 

 


 


 

Continuing operations

 


 


 

Net sales

 5,146,734


  7,294,055


  7,658,588

Cost of sales

  (4,087,317)


  (5,107,495)


  (5,279,300)

Gross profit

  1,059,417


  2,186,560


  2,379,288

Selling, general and administrative expenses

  (1,119,227)


  (1,365,974)


  (1,509,976)

Impairment charge (1)

  (622,402)


  -


  -

Other operating income (expenses), net

  19,141


  11,805


  2,501

Operating (loss) income

  (663,071)


  832,391


  871,813

Finance income

  18,387


  47,997


  39,856

Finance cost

  (27,014)


  (43,381)


  (36,942)

Other financial results

  (56,368)


  14,667


  34,386

(Loss) income before equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies and income tax

  (728,066)


  851,674


  909,113

Equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies

  108,799


  82,036


  193,994

(Loss) income before income tax

  (619,267)


  933,710


  1,103,107

Income tax

  (23,150)


  (202,452)


  (229,207)

(Loss) income for the year 

  (642,417)


  731,258


  873,900

 

 


 


 

(Loss) income attributable to (2):

 


 


 

Owners of the parent

  (634,418)


  742,686


  876,063

Non-controlling interests

  (7,999)


  (11,428)


  (2,163)

(Loss) income for the year (2)

  (642,417)


  731,258


  873,900

 

 


 


 

Depreciation and amortization for continuing operations

  (678,806)


  (539,521)


  (664,357)

Weighted average number of shares outstanding

  1,180,536,830


  1,180,536,830


  1,180,536,830

Basic and diluted (losses) earnings per share for continuing operations

  (0.54)


  0.63


  0.74

Basic and diluted (losses) earnings per share

  (0.54)


  0.63


  0.74

Dividends per share (3)

  0.07


  0.41


  0.41


 

(1)   Impairment charge in 2020 represents a charge of $622 million to the carrying value of goodwill of the CGUs OCTG USA, IPSCO and Coiled Tubing in the amounts of $225 million, $357 million and $4 million respectively, and the carrying value of fixed assets of the CGU Rods USA in the amount of $36 million.

(2)   International Accounting Standard No. 1 (“IAS 1”) (revised) requires that income for the year as shown on the income statement does not exclude non-controlling interests. Earnings per share, however, continue to be calculated on the basis of income attributable solely to the owners of the parent (i.e., the Company).

(3)   Dividends per share correspond to the dividends proposed or paid in respect of the year.


  

Thousands of U.S. dollars (except number of shares)

At December 31,

2020


2019


2018

Selected consolidated financial position data

 


 


 

 

 


 


 

Current assets

  4,287,672


  5,670,607


  5,464,192

Property, plant and equipment, net

  6,193,181


  6,090,017


  6,063,908

Other non-current assets

  3,235,336


  3,082,367


  2,723,199

Total assets

  13,716,189


  14,842,991


  14,251,299

 

 


 


 

Current liabilities

  1,166,475


  1,780,457


  1,718,363

Non-current borrowings

  315,739


  40,880


  29,187

Deferred tax liabilities

  254,801


  336,982


  379,039

Other non-current liabilities

  532,701


  498,300


  249,218

Total liabilities

  2,269,716


  2,656,619


  2,375,807

 

 


 


 

Capital and reserves attributable to owners of the parent

  11,262,888


  11,988,958


  11,782,882

Non-controlling interests

  183,585


  197,414


  92,610

Total equity

  11,446,473


  12,186,372


  11,875,492

 

 


 


 

Total liabilities and equity

  13,716,189


  14,842,991


  14,251,299

 

 


 


 

Share capital

  1,180,537


  1,180,537


  1,180,537

Number of shares outstanding

  1,180,536,830


  1,180,536,830


  1,180,536,830

 

B. Capitalization and Indebtedness

 

Not applicable.

C. Reasons for the Offer and Use of Proceeds

Not applicable.

D. Risk Factors

You should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described below, together with all other information contained in this annual report, before making any investment decision. Any of these risks and uncertainties could have a material adverse effect on our business, revenues, financial condition and results of operations, which could in turn affect the price of shares and ADSs.

 

Risks Relating to Our Industry

Sales and profitability may fall as a result of downturns in the international price of oil and gas and other factors and circumstances affecting the oil and gas industry.

We are a global steel pipe manufacturer with a strong focus on manufacturing products and providing related services for the oil and gas industry. The oil and gas industry is a major consumer of steel pipe products worldwide, particularly for products manufactured under high quality standards and demanding specifications. Demand for steel pipe products from the oil and gas industry has historically been volatile and depends primarily upon the number of oil and natural gas wells being drilled, completed and reworked, and the depth and drilling conditions of these wells. The level of exploration, development and production activities of, and the corresponding capital spending by, oil and gas companies, including national oil companies, depends primarily on current and expected future prices of oil and natural gas and is sensitive to the industry’s view of future economic growth and the resulting impact on demand for oil and natural gas. Several factors, such as the supply and demand for oil and gas, the development and availability of new drilling technology, political and global economic conditions, and government regulations, affect these prices. For example, drilling technology has allowed producers in the United States and Canada to increase production from their reserves of tight oil and shale gas in response to changes in market conditions more rapidly than in the past. In addition, government initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions could also affect oil and gas prices; for example, the introduction of a carbon tax, or other measures to promote the use of renewable energy sources or, electric vehicles, may result in incremental production costs and require additional capital expenditure, or even affect our competitiveness and results of operations. When the price of oil and gas falls, oil and gas companies generally reduce spending on production and exploration activities and, accordingly, make fewer purchases of steel pipe products. Major oil-and gas-producing nations and companies have frequently collaborated to balance the supply (and thus the price) of oil in the international markets. A major vehicle for this collaboration has been the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries ("OPEC") and many of our customers are state-owned companies in member countries of OPEC, which has played a significant role in trying to counter falling prices in 2020, when the industry was hit by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the oil and gas crisis and OPEC measures, see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview – The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition” and for more information on risks relating to climate change regulations , see “Risks Relating to Our Industry - Climate change legislation and increasing regulatory requirements could reduce demand for our products and services and result in unexpected capital expenditures and costs, and negatively affect our reputation.”  

Climate change legislation and increasing regulatory requirements could reduce demand for our products and services and result in unexpected capital expenditures and costs, and negatively affect our reputation.

There is an increased attention on greenhouse gas emissions and climate change from different sectors of society. The Paris Agreement, adopted at the 2015 United Nations Climate Conference, sets out the global framework to limit the rising temperature of the planet and to strengthen the countries’ ability to deal with the effects of climate change. If there is no meaningful progress in lowering emissions in the years ahead, there is an increased likelihood of abrupt policy interventions as governments attempt to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement (or any successor consensus) by adopting policy, legal, technology and market changes in the transition to a low-carbon global economy. We provide products and services to the oil and gas industry, which accounts, directly and indirectly for a significant portion of greenhouse gas emissions. Existing or future legislation and regulations related to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change, as well as government initiatives to promote the use of alternative energy sources (with many jurisdictions implementing tax advantages and other subsidies to promote the development of renewable energy sources, or even requiring minimum thresholds for power generation from renewable sources), may significantly curtail demand for and production of fossil fuels, such as oil and natural gas. These initiatives, together with the growing social awareness regarding climate change and other environmental matters, have resulted in increased investor and consumer demand for renewable energy and additional compliance requirements for fossil energy projects, which are likely to become more stringent over time and to result in substantial increases in costs for the oil and natural gas industry. Furthermore, ongoing technological developments in the renewable energy industry are making renewable energy increasingly competitive with fossil-fuels. If this trend continues, energy demand could shift increasingly towards “cleaner” sources such as hydroelectrical, solar, wind and other renewable energies, which would, in turn, reduce demand for oil and natural gas, thus negatively affecting demand for our products and services and, ultimately, our future results of operations. In addition, adoption of new climate change legislation in the countries in which Tenaris operates could result in incremental compliance costs and unexpected capital expenditures and, eventually, affect our competitiveness and reduce our market share. In addition, failure to respond to shareholders’ demand for climate-related measures and environmental standards could harm our reputation, adversely affect the ability or willingness of our customers or suppliers to do business with us, erode stakeholder support and restrict access to financial resources.



Climate change, including extreme weather conditions, has in the past and may in the future adversely affect our operations and financial results.

Our business has been, and in the future could be, affected by severe weather in areas where we operate, which could materially affect our operations and financial results. Extreme weather conditions such as hurricanes or flooding have in the past resulted in, and may in the future result in, the shutdown of our facilities, evacuation of our employees or activity disruptions at our client's well-sites or in our supply chain. In addition, impacts of climate change, such as sea level rise, coastal storm surge, inland flooding from intense rainfall, freeze, and hurricane-strength winds may damage our facilities or disrupt our operations. For example, a recent severe freeze in the United States and Mexico caused gas and power shortages in Texas, resulting in additional costs and production losses. Any such extreme weather-related events may result in increased operating costs or decreases in revenue which could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

The COVID-19 pandemic significantly reduced demand for our products and services, and could continue to impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

COVID-19 surfaced in China in December 2019 and subsequently spread to the rest of the world in early 2020. The rapid expansion of the virus, the surfacing of new strains of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in several countries, and the containment measures adopted by governmental authorities triggered a severe fall in global economic activity and precipitated a serious crisis in the energy sector. Global oil and gas demand decreased significantly causing a collapse in prices, an acute oversupply, a rapid build-up of excess inventories, and the consequent drop of investments in drilling activity by our oil and gas customers. We took prompt action to mitigate the impact of the crisis and to adapt our operations on a country-by-country basis to comply with applicable rules and requirements. We implemented a worldwide restructuring program and cost-containment plan aimed at preserving our financial resources and overall liquidity position and maintaining the continuity of our operations; we adjusted production levels at our facilities including through the temporary closure of certain facilities or production lines and layoffs in several jurisdictions, and we reduced capital expenditures and working capital. In addition, we introduced remote work and other work arrangements and implemented special operations protocols in order to safeguard the health and safety of our employees, customers and suppliers. Although such measures proved to be successful to mitigate the impact of the crisis on us, if the virus continues to spread and new preventive measures are imposed in the future, our operations could be further affected and adversely impact our results. In addition, although oil prices and demand for oil products started to recover, there remains considerable uncertainty about the future duration and extent of the pandemic with new and more contagious variants of the COVID-19 virus appearing and vaccination programs still on their early stages. In this uncertain environment our results of operations and financial condition could still be severely affected. For more information on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and measures adopted in connection therewith, see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview - The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition”.


Competition in the global market for steel pipe products may cause us to lose market share and hurt our sales and profitability.

The global market for steel pipe products is highly competitive, with the primary competitive factors being price, quality, service and technology. In recent years, substantial investments have been made, especially in China but also in the United States and the Middle East, to increase production capacity of seamless steel pipe products, and as a result there is significant excess production capacity, particularly for “commodity” or standard product grades. Capacity for the production of more specialized product grades has also increased. At the same time, the high cost and long lead times required to develop the most complex projects, particularly deepwater projects, has led to a slowdown in new developments in a context of low and more volatile oil prices. Despite our efforts to develop products and services that differentiate us from our competitors, reduced demand for steel pipe products from these complex projects means that the competitive environment is expected to remain intense in the coming years and effective competitive differentiation will be a key success factor. In addition, there is a risk of unfairly traded steel pipe imports in markets in which Tenaris produces and sells its products and, we can give no assurance with respect to the application of antidumping duties and tariffs or the effectiveness of any such measures. On the other hand, because of the global nature of our operations, we export and import products from several countries and, in many jurisdictions, we supplement domestic production with imported products. Several jurisdictions have begun to impose or expand local content requirements. For example, in recent years Saudi Arabia has implemented various measures aimed at increasing local content particularly from suppliers to state-owned companies such as Saudi Arabian Oil Company (“Saudi Aramco”) and we can expect that measures favoring the development of local production will increase as Saudi Arabia seeks to create employment opportunities for its citizens and diversify its economy away from its dependence on oil and gas production. In addition, in July 2020, Saudi Arabia increased import duties for the import of seamless pipe products from 5% to 10% and for the import of welded pipe products from 5% to 15%. If countries impose or expand local content requirements or put in place regulations limiting our ability to import certain products, our competitive position could be negatively affected. Therefore, if any of these risks materialize, we may not continue to compete effectively against existing or potential producers and preserve our current shares of geographic or product markets, and increased competition may have a material impact on the pricing of our products and services, which could in turn adversely affect our revenues, profitability and financial condition.

 

Increases in the cost of raw materials, energy and other costs, limitations or disruptions to the supply of raw materials and energy, and price mismatches between raw materials and our products may hurt our profitability.

The manufacture of seamless steel pipe products requires substantial amounts of steelmaking raw materials and energy; welded steel pipe products, in turn, are processed from steel coils and plates. The availability and pricing of a significant portion of the raw materials and energy we require are subject to supply and demand conditions, which can be volatile, and to tariffs and other government regulations, which can affect continuity of supply and prices. In addition, disruptions, restrictions or limited availability of energy resources in markets where we have significant operations could lead to higher costs of production and eventually to production cutbacks at our facilities in such markets. For example, we recently suffered gas and power shortages in Texas caused by a severe freeze affecting the United States and Mexico, which resulted in additional costs and production losses. At any given time, we may be unable to obtain an adequate supply of critical raw materials with price and other terms acceptable to us. The availability and prices of raw materials may also be negatively affected by new laws and regulations, including import controls, allocation by suppliers, interruptions in production, accidents or natural disasters, changes in exchange rates, worldwide price fluctuations, and the availability and cost of transportation. Raw material prices could also be affected by the introduction of carbon prices or taxes, or as a result of changes in production processes, such as an increased use of metal scrap, adopted by steelmaking companies seeking to reduce gas emissions. In addition, we may not be able to recover, partially or fully, increased costs of raw materials and energy through increased selling prices for our products, or it may take an extended period of time to do so, and limited availability could force us to curtail production, which could adversely affect our sales and profitability.

Our results of operations and financial conditions could be adversely affected by low levels of capacity utilization.

Like other manufacturers of steel-related products, we have fixed and semi-fixed costs (e.g., labor and other operating and maintenance costs) that cannot adjust rapidly to fluctuations in product demand for several reasons, including operational constraints and regulatory restrictions. If demand for our products falls significantly, or if we are unable to operate due to, for example, governmental measures or unavailability of workforce, these costs may adversely affect our profitability and financial condition. For example, in response to the abrupt and steep downturn of the oil and gas industry, resulting from the oil crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been required to implement cost-containment measures and liquidity preservation initiatives, including reduction of our operating activities in several jurisdictions, temporary closure of facilities in the United States and review of our capital expenditure plans. Temporary suspensions of operations or closure of facilities generally lead to layoffs of employees, as was our case during the oil crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic, which may in turn give rise to labor conflicts and impact operations. In addition, if demand recovers, we may not be able to reincorporate qualified workforce soon enough. Moreover, cost containment measures may also affect profitability and result in charges for asset impairments.

Risks Relating to Our Business

Adverse economic or political conditions in the countries where we operate or sell our products and services may decrease our sales or disrupt our manufacturing operations, thereby adversely affecting our revenues, profitability and financial condition.

We have significant operations in various countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Romania, Saudi Arabia and the United States, and we sell our products and services throughout the world. Additionally, in Russia we have formed a joint venture with PAO Severstal (“Severstal”) to build a welded pipe plant, the construction of which is currently on hold. Therefore, like other companies with worldwide operations, our business and operations have been, and could in the future be, affected from time to time to varying degrees by political, economic, social and public health developments and changes in laws and regulations. These developments and changes may include, among others, nationalization, expropriation or forced divestiture of assets; restrictions on production, imports and exports; travel, transportation or trade bans; interruptions in the supply of essential energy inputs; exchange and/or transfer restrictions, inability or increasing difficulties to repatriate income or capital or to make contract payments; inflation; devaluation; war or other armed conflicts (particularly in the Middle East and Africa); civil unrest and local security concerns, including high incidences of crime and violence involving drug trafficking organizations that threaten the safe operation of our facilities and operations; direct and indirect price controls; tax increases and changes (including retroactive) in the interpretation, application or enforcement of tax laws and other claims or challenges; cancellation of contract or property rights; and delays or denials of governmental approvals. Both the likelihood of such occurrences and their overall impact upon us vary greatly from country to country and are not predictable. Realization of these risks could have an adverse impact on the results of operations and financial condition of our subsidiaries located in the affected country and, depending on their materiality, on the results of operations and financial condition of Tenaris as a whole.


Argentina and Mexico are countries in which we have significant operations. Our business and operations in Argentina, may be materially and adversely affected by economic, political, social, fiscal and regulatory developments, including the following:

-          Macroeconomic and political conditions in Argentina may adversely affect our business and operations. Increased state intervention in the economy, along with the introduction of changes to government policies, could have an adverse effect on our operations and financial results. Similarly, they could also negatively impact the business and operations of our customers -oil and gas companies operating in Argentina- and consequently our revenues and profitability.

-          Our business and operations in Argentina may be adversely affected by inflation or by the measures that may be adopted by the government to address inflation. In particular, increases in services and labor costs could negatively affect our results of operations. In addition, an increased level of labor demands in response to spiraling inflation could trigger higher levels of labor conflicts, and eventually result in strikes or work stoppages. Any such disruption of operations could have an adverse effect on our operations and financial results.

-          Other events that may have an adverse effect on our operations and financial results include increased taxes, exchange controls, restrictions on capital flows and export and import taxes or restrictions. The Argentine Central Bank has tightened its control on transactions that would represent capital inflows or outflows, forcing Argentine companies to repatriate export proceeds and limiting their ability to transfer funds outside of Argentina. Argentine companies are required to repatriate export proceeds from sales of goods and services (including U.S. dollars obtained through advance payment and pre-financing facilities) and convert such proceeds into Argentine pesos at the official exchange rate. In turn, Argentine companies must obtain prior Central Bank authorization to access the foreign exchange market to pay for imports of services from related parties or to make dividend or royalty payments. Although there are currently no material restrictions to make payments for imports of goods, this may change in the future. These existing controls, and any additional foreign exchange restrictions that may be imposed in the future, could expose us to the risk of losses arising from fluctuations in the ARS/USD exchange rate or affect our ability to finance our investments and operations in Argentina, or impair our ability to convert and transfer outside the country funds generated by Argentine subsidiaries to pay dividends or royalties or make other offshore payments. For additional information on current Argentine exchange controls and restrictions see Item 10.D. “Additional Information – Exchange Controls – Argentina”.

-          In recent years, our operations in Argentina experienced constraints in their electricity and natural gas supply requirements on many occasions. Shortages of energy and natural gas in Argentina have led in the past (and could lead in the future) to production cutbacks negatively affecting our revenues and profitability; we could also face increased costs when using alternative sources of energy.

 

In Mexico, our business could be materially and adversely affected by economic, political, social, fiscal and regulatory developments, including the following:

-          The Mexican government exercises significant influence over the Mexican economy and, therefore, governmental actions concerning the economy and state-owned enterprises could have a significant impact on Mexico’s private sector and on our Mexican-related operations. In addition, changes of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (“USMCA”) from its predecessor NAFTA Agreement, could adversely affect the investment climate and economic activity in Mexico, Canada and/or in the United States and impact our results of operations and net results.

-          We have a growing credit exposure to Petróleos Mexicanos S.A. de C.V. (“Pemex”), a Mexican state-owned entity and our main customer in Mexico. Starting in 2019 and through 2020, we have been building a hefty balance of accounts receivable with Pemex, which decreased slightly in 2020, as a result of our continuous collection efforts during the year and reduced sales. In February 2021, the Mexican government announced its intention to grant Pemex a significant tax break aimed at reordering the company’s finances. However, if we are not able to further reduce our exposure to Pemex and Pemex defaults on its payments, our revenues and profitability would be adversely affected.

-          Our Mexican operations could also be affected by criminal violence, primarily due to the activities of drug cartels and related organized crime that Mexico has experienced and may continue to experience. The city of Veracruz, where our facility is located, has experienced several incidents of violence. Although the Mexican government has implemented various security measures and has strengthened its military and police forces, drug-related crime continues to exist in Mexico. Our business may be materially and adversely affected by these activities, their possible escalation and the violence associated with them.

-          In March 2021, the Mexican Congress approved a significant reform to the energy market in Mexico. Among other changes, the new Energy Industry Law (“LIE”) grants priority to Mexico’s state-owned electric power generation and distribution company (“CFE”) over its competitors in the supply of electric power to the Mexican market and mandates a revision of power generation and transaction agreements between the Federal government and independent electric power suppliers. In addition, the LIE eliminates mandatory power supply auctions for energy supplies requiring the use of CFE’s distribution network. The new LIE, which remains subject to implementing regulations by the competent authorities has already been challenged in court by affected players. There is uncertainty about the final outcome of court review and the energy reform could negatively affect the operations of Techgen S.A. de C.V. (“Techgen”), the power plant in which Tenaris holds a 22% equity interest and which supplies electricity for most of our Mexican operations. At this stage, we cannot fully assess the effects of the energy market reform on our operations and the Mexican economy in general and, consequently, on the results of operations and financial conditions of our businesses in Mexico.

-          In past years, our operations in Mexico experienced several days of union-led stoppages due to an internal dispute within the local union. In 2020 our Mexican operations did not experience any disruptions due to these stoppages, but we cannot assure that such events will not cause further disruptions in the near future.

 

If we do not successfully implement our business strategy, our ability to grow, our competitive position and our sales and profitability may suffer.

We plan to continue implementing our business strategy of developing integrated product and service solutions designed to differentiate our offerings from those of our competitors and meet the needs of our customers for lower operational costs and reliable performance even in the most demanding environments, as well as continuing to pursue strategic investment opportunities. Any of the components of our overall business strategy could cost more than anticipated, may not be successfully implemented or could be delayed or abandoned. For example, we may fail to create sufficient differentiation in our Rig Direct® services to compensate the added costs of providing such services, or fail to find suitable investment opportunities, including acquisition targets that enable us to continue to grow and improve our competitive position. Even if we successfully implement our business strategy, it may not yield the expected results. In 2020, JFE Holdings Inc. (“JFE”), our partner in NKKTubes K.K. (“NKKTubes”), informed Tenaris of its decision to cease the operations of certain facilities located at the Keihin complex in 2024, which may result in the unavailability of steel bars and other essential inputs or services used in NKKTubes’ manufacturing process, thereby affecting its operations. Although the parties will seek a mutually acceptable solution, we cannot predict the outcome of such discussions and the implications to NKKTubes’ operations and results.

We could be subject to regulatory risks associated with our international operations.

The shipment of goods and services across international borders subjects us to extensive trade laws and regulations. Our import and export activities are governed by customs laws and regulations in each of the countries where we operate. Moreover, the European Union, the United States and other countries control the import and export of certain goods and services and impose related import and export recordkeeping and reporting obligations. Those governments have also imposed economic sanctions against certain countries, persons and other entities, such as sanctions involving sales to Iran, Syria, Venezuela, and Russia that restrict or prohibit transactions involving such countries, persons and entities. Similarly, we are subject to the U.S. anti-boycott laws. These laws and regulations are complex and frequently changing, and they may be enacted, amended, enforced or interpreted in a manner that could materially impact our operations. For example, in March 2018, under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 (“Section 232”), the United States imposed a 25% tariff on steel articles imported from all countries, with the exemption of Canada and Mexico, as member states of the USMCA, and imports of steel tubes from Australia, Argentina, Brazil and South Korea (the latter three with specific quotas per product). The U.S. government has also granted three successive exemptions on imports from Italy, Mexico, Romania and Argentina, of steel billets to be used at our Bay City mill, for an aggregate amount of 1,250,000 tons. The current exemption covers 405,000 tons from Italy and Romania and is valid until August 2021. Exemptions are granted only for a one-year term and future requests might not be granted, thus adversely affecting our operations or revenues. Additionally, countries could impose or expand local content requirements or regulations which could limit our capacity to compete effectively, increase our costs and reduce our profitability. For further information, see “Risks Relating to our Industry – Competition in the global market for steel pipe products may cause us to lose market share and hurt our sales and profitability.” In addition, failure to comply with applicable trade regulations could also result in criminal and civil penalties and sanctions.

 

Changes in applicable tax regulations and resolutions of tax disputes could negatively affect our financial results.

We are subject to tax laws in numerous foreign jurisdictions where we operate. The integrated nature of our worldwide operations can produce conflicting claims from revenue authorities in different countries as to the profits to be taxed in the individual countries, including disputes relating to transfer pricing. Most of the jurisdictions in which we operate have double tax treaties with foreign jurisdictions, which provide a framework for mitigating the impact of double taxation on our results. However, mechanisms developed to resolve such conflicting claims are largely untried, and can be expected to be very lengthy. In recent years, tax authorities around the world have increased their scrutiny of company tax filings and have become more rigid in exercising any discretion they may have. As part of this, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (“OECD”) has proposed a number of tax law changes under its Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (“BEPS”) Action Plans to address issues of transparency, coherence and substance. At the EU level, the European Commission has adopted its Anti Tax Avoidance Directive (“ATAD”), which seeks to prevent tax avoidance by companies and to ensure that companies pay appropriate taxes in the markets where profits are effectively made and business is effectively performed. Changes to tax laws and regulations in the countries where we operate require us to continually assess our organizational structure and could lead to increased risk of international tax disputes. Our interpretation and application of the tax laws could differ from that of the relevant governmental taxing authority, which could result in the payment of additional taxes, penalties or interest, negatively affecting our profitability and financial condition.

 

Future acquisitions, strategic partnerships and capital investments may not perform in accordance with expectations or may disrupt our operations and hurt our profits.

One element of our business strategy is to identify and pursue growth-enhancing strategic opportunities. As part of that strategy, we regularly make significant capital investments and acquire interests in, or businesses of, various companies. For example, in January 2020, we acquired IPSCO Tubulars Inc. (“IPSCO”), a U.S. producer of seamless and welded OCTG and line pipe products, for $1.0 billion. Consistent with our growth strategy, we intend to continue considering strategic acquisitions, investments and partnerships from time to time to expand our operations and establish a local presence in our markets. We must necessarily base any assessment of potential acquisitions, joint ventures and capital investments on assumptions with respect to timing, profitability, market and customer behavior and other matters that may subsequently prove to be incorrect. For example, we negotiated the terms for the acquisition of IPSCO in early 2019 based on assumptions made at that time, but due to the length of the antitrust review process, we were able to complete the acquisition only in 2020 under materially worse market circumstances. For more information on IPSCO’s acquisition see note 32Business combinations – Acquisition of IPSCO Tubulars, Inc.” and for information on impairment charges on our U.S. operations see note 5Impairment charge both to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report. Our past or future acquisitions, significant investments and alliances may not perform in accordance with our expectations and could adversely affect our operations and profitability. In addition, new demands on our existing organization and personnel resulting from the integration of new acquisitions could disrupt our operations and adversely affect our operations and profitability. Moreover, as part of future acquisitions, we may acquire assets that are unrelated to our business, and we may not be able to integrate these assets or sell them under favorable terms and conditions.

Disruptions to our manufacturing processes could adversely affect our operations, customer service levels and financial results.

Our steel pipe manufacturing processes depend on the operation of critical steelmaking equipment, such as electric arc furnaces (“EAF”), continuous casters, rolling mills, heat treatment and various operations that support them, such as our power generation facilities. Despite the investments we make to maintain critical production equipment, such equipment may incur downtime as a result of unanticipated failures or other events, such as fires, explosions, floods, accidents and severe weather conditions.

Similarly, natural disasters or severe weather conditions, including those related to climate change could significantly damage our production facilities and general infrastructure or affect the normal course of business. For example, our Mexican production facility located in Veracruz is located in a region prone to earthquakes, and our Bay City facility in Texas, United States is located in an area prone to strong winds and hurricanes, and occasional floods. More generally, changing weather patterns and climatic conditions in recent years have added to the unpredictability and frequency of natural disasters. For more information on the risks associated with climate-change, see “Risks Relating to Our Business – Climate change, including extreme weather conditions, has in the past and may in the future adversely affect our operations and financial results”.

 

Our operations may also be adversely affected as a result of work stoppages or other labor conflicts. In past years, our operations in Mexico experienced several days of union-led stoppages due to an internal dispute within the local union. Although in 2020 our Mexican operations did not experience any disruptions due to these stoppages, we cannot assure that such events will not cause further disruptions in the near future. In addition, in some of the countries in which we have significant production facilities (e.g., Argentina and Brazil), significant inflationary pressures and higher tax burdens, increase labor demands and could eventually generate higher levels of labor conflicts, which could also trigger operational disruptions.

In addition, some of our facilities or production lines have been closed or shutdown as a result of the cost containment measures adopted to respond to the recent economic crisis or in response to governmental regulations to prevent the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic or due to the unavailability of workforce. For more information on the status of our operations see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

Some of the previously described emergency situations could result in damage to property, delays in production or shipments and, in extreme cases, death or injury to persons. Any of the foregoing could create liability for Tenaris. To the extent that lost production or delays in shipments cannot be compensated for by unaffected facilities, such events could have an adverse effect on our profitability and financial condition. Additionally, we do not carry business interruption insurance, and the insurance we maintain for property damage and general liability may not be adequate or available to protect us under such events, its coverage may be limited, or the amount of our insurance may be less than the related loss. For more information on our insurance coverage see Item 4.B. “Information on the Company – B. Business overview Insurance”.

 

We may be required to record a significant charge to earnings if we must reassess our goodwill or other assets as a result of changes in assumptions underlying the carrying value of certain assets, particularly as a consequence of deteriorating market conditions.

Assets that are subject to amortization are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable. Intangible assets with indefinite useful life, including goodwill, are subject to at least an annual impairment test. On December 31, 2020, we had $1,086 million in goodwill corresponding mainly ($920 million) to the acquisition of Hydril Company (“Hydril”) in 2007. In addition, we recognized goodwill for approximately $357 million in connection with our acquisition of IPSCO. As a result of the severe deterioration of business conditions and in light of the presence of impairment indicators for its U.S. operations, Tenaris recorded impairment charges as of March 31, 2020, for an aggregate amount of approximately $622 million. For more information on impairment charges on our U.S. operations see note 5 “Impairment charge” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

Our results of operations and financial condition could be adversely affected by movements in exchange rates.

As a global company we manufacture and sell products in a number of countries throughout the world and a portion of our business is carried out in currencies other than the U.S. dollar, which is the Company’s functional and presentation currency. As a result, we are exposed to foreign exchange rate risk. Changes in currency values and foreign exchange regulations could adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. For information on our foreign exchange rate risk, please see Item 11. “Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosure About Market Risk – Foreign Exchange Rate Risk”.

If we do not comply with laws and regulations designed to combat corruption in countries in which we sell our products, we could become subject to governmental investigations, fines, penalties or other sanctions and to private lawsuits and our sales and profitability could suffer.

We operate globally and conduct business in certain countries known to experience high levels of corruption. Although we are committed to conducting business in a legal and ethical manner in compliance with local and international statutory requirements and standards applicable to our business, there is a risk that our employees, representatives, affiliates, or other persons may take actions that violate applicable laws and regulations that generally prohibit the making of improper payments, including to foreign government officials, for the purpose of obtaining or keeping business, including laws relating to the 1997 OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions such as the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”). Investigations by government authorities may occupy considerable management time and attention and result in significant expenditures, fines, penalties or other sanctions, as well as private lawsuits. For information on matters related to an ongoing investigation in connection with certain allegedly improper payments in Brazil, please refer to Item 8. A. “Consolidated Statements and Other Financial Information – Legal Proceedings”.

The cost of complying with environmental regulations and potential environmental and product liabilities may increase our operating costs and negatively impact our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

We are subject to a wide range of local,state, provincial and national laws, regulations, permit requirements and decrees relating to the protection of human health and the environment, including laws and regulations relating to hazardous materials and radioactive materials and environmental protection governing air emissions, water discharges and waste management. Laws and regulations protecting the environment have become increasingly complex and more stringent and expensive to implement in recent years. Additionally, international environmental requirements vary. While standards in the European Union, Canada, and Japan are generally comparable to U.S. standards, other nations, particularly developing nations, including China, have substantially fewer or less rigorous requirements that may give competitors in such nations a competitive advantage. It is possible that any international agreement to regulate emissions may provide exemptions and lesser standards for developing nations. In such case, we may be at a competitive disadvantage relative to competitors having more or all of their production in such developing nations.

Environmental laws and regulations may, in some cases, impose strict liability rendering a person liable for damages to natural resources or threats to public health and safety without regard to negligence or fault. Some environmental laws provide for joint and several strict liability for remediation of spills and releases of hazardous substances. These laws and regulations may expose us to liability for the conduct of or conditions caused by others or for acts that were in compliance with all applicable laws at the time they were performed.

Compliance with applicable requirements and the adoption of new requirements could have a material adverse effect on our consolidated financial condition, results of operations or cash flows. The costs and ultimate impact of complying with environmental laws and regulations are not always clearly known or determinable since regulations under some of these laws have not yet been promulgated or are undergoing revision. The expenditures necessary to remain in compliance with these laws and regulations, including site or other remediation costs, or costs incurred as a result of potential violations of environmental laws could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and profitability. While we incur and will continue to incur expenditures to comply with applicable laws and regulations, there always remains a risk that environmental incidents or accidents may occur that may negatively affect our reputation or our operations.

 

Our oil and gas casing, tubing and line pipe products are sold primarily for use in oil and gas drilling, gathering, transportation, processing and power generation facilities, which are subject to inherent risks, including well failures, line pipe leaks, blowouts, bursts and fires, that could result in death, personal injury, property damage, environmental pollution or loss of production. Any of these hazards and risks can result in environmental liabilities, personal injury claims and property damage from the release of hydrocarbons.

Defects in specialty tubing products could result in death, personal injury, property damage, environmental pollution, damage to equipment and facilities or loss of production.

We normally warrant the oilfield products and specialty tubing products we sell or distribute in accordance with customer specifications, but as we pursue our business strategy of providing customers with additional services, such as Rig Direct®, we may be required to warrant that the goods we sell and services we provide are fit for their intended purpose. Actual or claimed defects in our products may give rise to claims against us for losses suffered by our customers and expose us to claims for damages. The insurance we maintain will not be available in cases of gross negligence or willful misconduct, in other cases may not be adequate or available to protect us in the event of a claim, its coverage may be limited, canceled or otherwise terminated, or the amount of our insurance may be less than the related impact on enterprise value after a loss. Similarly, our sales of tubes and components for the automotive industry subject us to potential product liability risks that could extend to being held liable for the costs of the recall of automobiles sold by car manufacturers and their distributors.

Limitations on our ability to protect our intellectual property rights, including our trade secrets, could cause a loss in revenue and any competitive advantage we hold.

Some of our products or services, and the processes we use to produce or provide them, have been granted patent protection, have patent applications pending, or are trade secrets. Our business may be adversely affected if our patents are unenforceable, the claims allowed under our patents are not sufficient to protect our technology, our patent applications are denied or our trade secrets are not adequately protected. Our competitors may be able to independently develop technology that is similar to ours without infringing on our patents or gaining access to our trade secrets, which could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

Cyberattacks could have a material adverse impact on our business and results of operation.

We rely heavily on information systems to conduct our business. Although we devote significant resources to protect our systems and data, we have experienced and will continue to experience varying degrees of cyber incidents in the normal conduct of our business, which may occasionally include sophisticated cybersecurity threats such as unauthorized access to data and systems, loss or destruction of data, computer viruses or other malicious code, phishing, spoofing and/or cyberattacks. These threats often arise from numerous sources, not all of which are within our control, such as fraud or malice from third parties, including fraud involving business email compromises, failures of computer servers or other accidental technological failures, electrical or telecommunication outages or other damage to our property or assets. Cyber-attack attempts, such as ransomware, phishing, spoofing and whaling, increased in 2020 in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, primarily due to a significant expansion of remote work practices among our employees, customers and suppliers. For example, in 2020, we suffered four spoofing attempts with no impact on results. In this context, we deployed additional controls to upgrade monitoring, detection and response capabilities against hacking, malware infection, cybersecurity compromise and other risks. Given the rapidly evolving nature of cyber threats, there can be no assurance that the systems we have designed to prevent or limit the effects of cyber incidents or attacks will be adequate, and such incidents or attacks could have a material adverse impact on our systems. While we attempt to mitigate these risks, we remain vulnerable to additional known or unknown threats, including theft, misplacement or loss of data, programming errors, employee errors and/or dishonest behavior that could potentially lead to the compromising of sensitive information, improper use of our systems or networks, as well as unauthorized access, use, disclosure, modification or destruction of such information, systems and/or networks. If our systems for protecting against cybersecurity risks are circumvented or breached, this could also result in disruptions to our business operations (including but not limited to, defective products or production downtimes), access to our financial reporting systems, the loss of access to critical data or systems, misuse or corruption of critical data and proprietary information (including our intellectual property and customer data), as well as damage to our reputation with our customers and the market, failure to meet customer requirements, customer dissatisfaction and/or other financial costs and losses. In addition, given that cybersecurity threats continue to evolve, we will be required to devote additional resources in the future to enhance our protective measures or to investigate and/or remediate any cybersecurity vulnerabilities. Moreover, any investigation of a cyberattack would take time before completion, during which we would not necessarily know the extent of the actual or potential harm or how best to remediate it, and certain errors or actions could be repeated or compounded before duly discovered and remediated (all or any of which could further increase the costs and consequences arising out of such cyberattack).


Risks Relating to the Structure of the Company

The Company’s dividend payments depend on the results of operations and financial condition of its subsidiaries and could be affected by legal, contractual or other limitations or tax changes.

The Company is a holding company and conducts all its operations through subsidiaries. Dividends or other intercompany transfers of funds from those subsidiaries are the Company’s primary source of funds to pay its expenses, debt service and dividends and to repurchase shares or ADSs.

The ability of the Company’s subsidiaries to pay dividends and make other payments to us will depend on their results of operations and financial condition and could be restricted by applicable corporate and other laws and regulations, including those imposing foreign exchange controls or restrictions on the repatriation of capital or the making of dividend payments, and agreements and commitments of such subsidiaries. If earnings and cash flows of the Company’s operating subsidiaries are substantially reduced, including as a result of deteriorating market conditions, the Company may not be in a position to meet its operational needs or to pay dividends. For information concerning potential restrictions on our ability to collect dividends from certain subsidiaries, see “Risks Relating to Our Business – Adverse economic or political conditions in the countries where we operate or sell our products and services may decrease our sales or disrupt our manufacturing operations, thereby adversely affecting our revenues, profitability and financial condition” and Item 5.G. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects –Recent Developments – Annual Dividend Proposal”.

The Company’s ability to pay dividends to shareholders is subject to legal and other requirements and restrictions in effect at the holding company level. For example, the Company may only pay dividends out of net profits, retained earnings and distributable reserves and premiums, each as defined and calculated in accordance with Luxembourg law and regulations.

The Company’s controlling shareholder may be able to take actions that do not reflect the will or best interests of other shareholders.

As of the date of this annual report, San Faustin beneficially owned 60.45% of our outstanding voting shares. Rocca & Partners Stichting Administratiekantoor Aandelen San Faustin (“RP STAK”), holds voting rights in San Faustin sufficient to control San Faustin. As a result, RP STAK is indirectly able to elect a substantial majority of the members of the Company’s board of directors and has the power to determine the outcome of most actions requiring shareholder approval, including, subject to the requirements of Luxembourg law, the payment of dividends. The decisions of the controlling shareholder may not reflect the will or best interest of other shareholders. In addition, the Company’s articles of association permit the Company’s board of directors to waive, limit or suppress preemptive rights in certain cases. Accordingly, the Company’s controlling shareholder may cause its board of directors to approve in certain cases an issuance of shares for consideration without preemptive rights, thereby diluting the minority interest in the Company. See “Risks Relating to shares and ADSs – Holders of shares and ADSs in the United States may not be able to exercise preemptive rights in certain cases”.

Risks Relating to shares and ADSs

Holders of shares or ADSs may not have access to as much information about us as they would in the case of a domestic issuer.

There may be less publicly available information about us than is regularly published by or about U.S. domestic issuers. Also, corporate and securities regulations governing Luxembourg companies may not be as extensive as those in effect in other jurisdictions and U.S. securities regulations applicable to foreign private issuers, such as the Company, differ in certain respects from those applicable to U.S. domestic issuers. Furthermore, IFRS, the accounting standards in accordance with which we prepare our consolidated financial statements, differ in certain material aspects from U.S. GAAP.


Holders of ADSs may not be able to exercise, or may encounter difficulties in the exercise of, certain rights afforded to shareholders.

Certain shareholders’ rights under Luxembourg law, including the rights to participate and vote at general meetings of shareholders, to include items on the agenda for the general meetings of shareholders, to receive dividends and distributions, to bring actions, to examine our books and records and to exercise appraisal rights may not be available to holders of ADSs, or may be subject to restrictions and special procedures for their exercise, as holders of ADSs only have those rights that are expressly granted to them in the deposit agreement. Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas, as depositary under the ADS deposit agreement, or the Depositary, through its custodian agent, is the registered shareholder of the deposited shares underlying the ADSs, and therefore only the Depositary can exercise the shareholders’ rights in connection with the deposited shares. For example, if we make a distribution in the form of securities, the Depositary is allowed, at its discretion, to sell the right to acquire those securities on your behalf and instead distribute the net proceeds to you. Also, under certain circumstances, such as our failure to provide the Depositary with properly completed voting instructions on a timely basis, you may not be able to vote at general meetings of shareholders by giving instructions to the Depositary. If the Depositary does not receive voting instructions from the holder of ADSs by the prescribed deadline, or the instructions are not in proper form, then the Depositary shall deem such holder of ADSs to have instructed the Depositary to vote the underlying shares represented by ADSs in favor of any proposals or recommendations of the Company (including any recommendation by the Company to vote such underlying shares on any given issue in accordance with the majority shareholder vote on that issue), for which purposes the Depositary shall issue a proxy to a person appointed by the Company to vote such underlying shares represented by ADSs in favor of any proposals or recommendations of the Company. Under the ADS deposit agreement, no instruction shall be deemed given and no proxy shall be given with respect to any matter as to which the Company informs the Depositary that (i) it does not wish such proxy given, (ii) it has knowledge that substantial opposition exists with respect to the action to be taken at the meeting, or (iii) the matter materially and adversely affects the rights of the holders of ADSs.

Holders of shares and ADSs in the United States may not be able to exercise preemptive rights in certain cases.

Pursuant to Luxembourg corporate law, existing shareholders of the Company are generally entitled to preferential subscription rights (preemptive rights) in the event of capital increases and issues of shares against cash contributions. Under the Company’s articles of association, the board of directors has been authorized to waive, limit or suppress such preemptive subscription rights. Notwithstanding the waiver of any preemptive subscription rights, any issuance of shares for cash within the limits of the authorized share capital shall be subject to the preemptive subscription rights of existing shareholders, except (i) any issuance of shares (including without limitation, the direct issuance of shares or upon the exercise of options, rights convertible into shares, or similar instruments convertible or exchangeable into shares) against a contribution other than in cash; and (ii) any issuance of shares (including by way of free shares or at discount), up to an amount of 1.5% of the issued share capital of the Company, to directors, officers, agents, employees of the Company, its direct or indirect subsidiaries or its affiliates (or, collectively, the beneficiaries), including without limitation, the direct issuance of shares or upon the exercise of options, rights convertible into shares or similar instruments convertible or exchangeable into shares, issued for the purpose of compensation or incentive of the beneficiaries or in relation thereto (which the board of directors shall be authorized to issue upon such terms and conditions as it deems fit).

Holders of ADSs in the United States may, in any event, not be able to exercise any preemptive rights, if granted, for shares underlying their ADSs unless additional shares and ADSs are registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, (“Securities Act”), with respect to those rights, or an exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act is available. We intend to evaluate, at the time of any rights offering, the costs and potential liabilities associated with the exercise by holders of shares and ADSs of the preemptive rights for shares, and any other factors we consider appropriate at the time, and then to make a decision as to whether to register additional shares. We may decide not to register any additional shares, requiring a sale by the Depositary of the holders’ rights and a distribution of the proceeds thereof. Should the Depositary not be permitted or otherwise be unable to sell preemptive rights, the rights may be allowed to lapse with no consideration to be received by the holders of the ADSs.


It may be difficult to enforce judgments against us outside Luxembourg.

The Company is a société anonyme organized under the laws of Luxembourg, and most of its assets are located in other jurisdictions. Furthermore, most of the Company’s directors and officers named in this annual report reside in different jurisdictions. As a result, investors may not be able to effect service of process upon us or our directors or officers. Investors may also not be able to enforce against us or our directors or officers in the investors’ domestic courts, judgments predicated upon the civil liability provisions of the domestic laws of the investors’ home countries. Likewise, it may be difficult for investors not domiciled in Luxembourg to bring an original action in a Luxembourg court predicated upon the civil liability provisions of other securities laws, including U.S. federal securities laws, against the Company, its directors and officers. There is also uncertainty with regard to the enforceability of original actions of civil liabilities predicated upon the civil liability provisions of securities laws, including U.S. federal securities laws, outside the jurisdiction where such judgments have been rendered; and enforceability will be subject to compliance with procedural requirements under applicable local law, including the condition that the judgment does not violate the public policy of the applicable jurisdiction.

Overview

We are the leading manufacturer of pipes and related services for the world's energy industry and certain other industrial applications. Our manufacturing system integrates steelmaking, pipe rolling and forming, heat treatment, threading and finishing across 16 countries. We also have a research and development (“R&D”) network focused on enhancing our product portfolio and improving our production processes. Our team, based in more than 30 countries worldwide, is united by a passion for excellence in everything we do.             

Through our integrated, worldwide network of seamless and welded manufacturing facilities, service centers and R&D centers, we work with customers to meet their needs, upholding the highest standards of safety, quality and performance.

Our mission is to deliver value to our customers through product and process innovation, manufacturing excellence, supply chain integration, technical assistance and customer service, aiming to reduce risk and costs, increase flexibility and improve time-to-market. Wherever we operate, we are committed to safety and minimizing our impact on the environment, providing opportunities for our people, and contributing to the sustainable development of our communities.

A.  History and Development of the Company

The Company

Our holding company’s legal and commercial name is Tenaris S.A. The Company was established as a société anonyme organized under the laws of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg on December 17, 2001. The Company’s registered office is located at 26 Boulevard Royal, 4th Floor, L-2449, Luxembourg, telephone +(352) 2647-8978. Its agent for U.S. federal securities law purposes is Tenaris Global Services (U.S.A.) Corporation (“TEUS”), located at 2200 West Loop South, Suite 800, Houston, TX 77027.

Tenaris

Tenaris began with the formation of Siderca S.A.I.C. (“Siderca”), the sole Argentine producer of seamless steel pipe products, by San Faustin’s predecessor in Argentina in 1948. We acquired Siat S.A., an Argentine welded steel pipe manufacturer, in 1986. We grew organically in Argentina and then, in the early 1990s, began to evolve beyond this initial base into a global business through a series of strategic investments. As of the date of this annual report, our investments include controlling interests in several manufacturing companies:

  • Tubos de Acero de México S.A. (“Tamsa”), the sole Mexican producer of seamless steel pipe products;
  • Dalmine S.p.A. (“Dalmine”), a leading Italian producer of seamless steel pipe products;
  • Confab Industrial S.A. (“Confab”), the leading Brazilian producer of welded steel pipe products;
  • NKKTubes, a leading Japanese producer of seamless steel pipe products;

 

  • Algoma Tubes Inc. (“AlgomaTubes”), the sole Canadian producer of seamless steel pipe products;
  • S.C. Silcotub S.A. (“Silcotub”), a leading Romanian producer of seamless steel pipe products;
  • Maverick Tube Corporation (“Maverick”), a U.S. producer of welded steel pipe products;
  • Prudential Steel Ltd. (“Prudential”), a welded pipe mill that produced OCTG, and line pipe products in Canada;
  • Tenaris TuboCaribe Ltda. (“TuboCaribe”), a welded pipe mill producing OCTG products including finishing of welded and seamless pipes, line pipe products, and couplings in Colombia;
  • Hydril, a North American manufacturer of premium connection products for oil and gas drilling production;
  • PT Seamless Pipe Indonesia Jaya (“SPIJ”), an Indonesian OCTG processing business with heat treatment and premium connection threading facilities;
  • Tenaris Qingdao Steel Pipes Ltd. (“Tenaris Qingdao”), a Chinese producer of premium joints and couplings;
  • Pipe Coaters Nigeria Ltd. (“Pipe Coaters”) the leading company in the Nigerian coating industry;
  • Tenaris Bay City Inc. (“Tenaris Bay City”), a state-of-the-art seamless pipe mill in Bay City, Texas;
  • Saudi Steel Pipe Company (“SSPC”), a Saudi producer of welded steel pipe products;
  • IPSCO, a North American manufacturer of seamless and welded steel pipes; and
  • sucker rod businesses, in various countries.
  • We also own strategic interests in:
  • Ternium S.A. (“Ternium”), one of the leading flat steel producers of the Americas with operating facilities in Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, the southern United States and Central America;
  • Usinas Siderúrgicas de Minas Gerais S.A. (“Usiminas”), a Brazilian producer of high quality flat steel products used in the energy, automotive and other industries; and
  • Techgen, an electric power plant in Mexico;

In 2019, we entered into a joint venture with Severstal to build and operate a welded pipe mill to manufacture OCTG products in Surgut, Western Siberia. Construction activities for the welded pipe mill have been put on hold while the joint venture partners assess changes in the relevant markets and the competitive environment to determine whether adjustments or changes to the project could be necessary. Our share in the joint venture is 49%.

In 2020, we also entered into a joint venture with Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Union Co., Ltd. (“Baotou Steel”) to build a premium connection threading facility to finish steel pipe products produced by our joint venture partner in Baotou, China, for sale in the domestic market.

Tenaris’s Prudential facility, located in Calgary, Alberta, was closed down in 2020, and the pipe manufacturing operations of seamless, welded and premium products in Canada will be consolidated at our AlgomaTubes facility located in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario with an additional investment of $72 million. This repositioning of the industrial activities, which is estimated to be completed by the end of 2021, is expected to strengthen the competitiveness and increase the domestic production capabilities for the Canadian market.

 

In addition, we have established a global network of pipe finishing, distribution and service facilities with a direct presence in most major oil and gas markets and a global network of research and development centers.

For information on Tenaris’s principal capital expenditures and divestitures, see Item 4.B. “Information on the Company – Business Overview – Capital Expenditure Program”.

19

B.  Business Overview

Our business strategy is to consolidate our position as a leading global supplier of integrated product and service solutions to the energy and other industries by:

  • pursuing strategic investment opportunities in order to further strengthen our presence in local and global markets;
  • expanding our comprehensive range of products and developing new products designed to meet the needs of customers operating in challenging environments, including low carbon energy applications, such as hydrogen and carbon capture and storage;
  • enhancing our offering of technical, digital and supply chain integration services designed to enable customers to optimize well planning and integrity, simplify operations and reduce overall operating costs; and
  • securing an adequate supply of production inputs and reducing the manufacturing costs of our core products.

Pursuing strategic investment opportunities and alliances

We have a solid record of growth through strategic investments and acquisitions. We pursue selective strategic investments and acquisitions as a means to expand our operations and presence in select markets, enhance our global competitive position and capitalize on potential operational synergies. For example:

-          In January 2019 we acquired a 47.79% interest in SSPC, a welded steel pipes producer located in Saudi Arabia.

-          In February 2019, we entered into a joint venture with Severstal to build and operate welded pipe plant in West Siberia, Russian Federation. As indicated above, construction activities for that plant have been put on hold.

-          In January 2020, we acquired IPSCO, a North American manufacturer of seamless and welded steel pipes, from PAO TMK (“TMK”), with facilities located mainly in the midwestern and northeastern regions of the United States, and a steel shop in Koppel, Pennsylvania. For more information on IPSCO’ acquisition see note 32 “Business combinations – Acquisition of IPSCO Tubulars, Inc.” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

-          In December 2020 we entered into a joint venture with Baotou Steel to build a premium connection threading facility to finish steel pipes produced by our joint venture partner in Baotou, China, for sale to the domestic market.

Our track record on companies’ acquisitions is described above (see “History and Development of the Company – Tenaris”).

Expanding our range of products

We have developed an extensive range of high-value products suitable for most of our customers’ operations using our network of specialized R&D facilities and by investing in our manufacturing facilities. As our customers expand their operations, we seek to supply high-value products that reduce costs and enable them to operate safely in challenging environments, including those for low-carbon applications associated with the energy transition.

Enhancing our offering of technical, digital and supply chain integration services - Rig Direct® - and extending their global deployment

We continue to enhance our offering of Rig Direct® services and extend their deployment worldwide. For many years, we have provided these services, managing customer inventories and directly supplying pipes to their rigs on a just-in-time basis, complemented by technical advice and assistance on the selection of materials and their use in the field, in markets like Mexico and Argentina. In response to changes in market conditions and the increased focus of customers on reducing costs and improving the efficiency of their operations, the extent and deployment of our Rig Direct® services has been extended throughout North America and in other markets around the world (e.g., North Sea, Romania, Indonesia and, most recently, the United Arab Emirates) and now include digital and more extensive supply chain integration services. Through the provision of Rig Direct® services, we seek to integrate our operations with those of our customers using digital technologies to shorten the supply chain and simplify operational and administrative processes, as well as technical services for well planning and well integrity, to reduce costs, improve safety and minimize environmental impact. They are also intended to differentiate us from our competitors and further strengthen our relationships with customers worldwide through long-term agreements.


Securing inputs for our manufacturing operations

We seek to secure our existing sources of raw material and energy inputs, and to gain access to new sources of low-cost inputs which can help us maintain or reduce the cost of manufacturing our core products and, in the future, reduce the carbon emissions intensity of our operations over the long term. We aim to achieve a vertically integrated value chain for our production. To this end, we purchase most of our supplies through Exiros, a specialized procurement company the ownership of which we share with Ternium. Exiros offers us integral procurement solutions, supplier sourcing activities; category organized purchasing; suppliers’ performance administration; and inventory management. In addition, through IPSCO’s acquisition, we have secured a steel shop in Koppel, Pennsylvania, which is our first steel shop in the United States and provides vertical integration through domestic production of a significant part of our steel bar needs in the United States.

 

Our Competitive Strengths

We believe our main competitive strengths include:

  • our global production, commercial and distribution capabilities, offering a full product range with flexible supply options backed up by local service capabilities in important oil and gas producing and industrial regions around the world;
  • our ability to develop, design and manufacture technologically advanced products;
  • our solid and diversified customer base and historic relationships with major international oil and gas companies around the world, and our strong and stable market shares in most of the countries in which we have manufacturing operations;
  • our proximity to our customers;
  • our human resources around the world with their diverse knowledge and skills;
  • our low-cost operations, primarily at state-of-the-art, strategically located production facilities with favorable access to raw materials, energy and labor, and more than 60 years of operating experience; and
  • our strong financial condition.

Business Segments

Tenaris has one major business segment, Tubes, which is also the reportable operating segment.

The Tubes segment includes the production and sale of both seamless and welded steel tubular products and related services mainly for the oil and gas industry, particularly OCTG used in drilling operations, and for other industrial applications with production processes that consist in the transformation of steel into tubular products. Business activities included in this segment are mainly dependent on the oil and gas industry worldwide, as this industry is a major consumer of steel pipe products, particularly casing, tubing and line pipe products used in drilling and transportation activities. Demand for steel pipe products from the energy industry has historically been volatile and depends primarily upon the number of oil and natural gas wells being drilled, completed and reworked, and the depth and drilling conditions of such wells. As the energy transition advances, demand is also expected to grow in low-carbon energy applications such as geothermal, hydrogen and carbon capture and storage. Sales are generally made to end users, with exports being done through a centrally managed global distribution network and domestic sales made through local subsidiaries. Corporate general and administrative expenses have been allocated to the Tubes segment.

The Others segment includes all other business activities and operating segments that are not required to be separately reported, including the production and selling of sucker rods, industrial equipment, coiled tubing, heat exchangers, utility conduits for buildings and the sale of energy and raw materials that exceed internal requirements.

For more information on our business segments, see “II C. Accounting Policies – Segment information” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

 

Our Products

Our principal finished products are seamless and welded steel casing and tubing, line pipe and various other mechanical and structural steel pipes for different uses. Casing and tubing are also known as oil country tubular goods (“OCTG”). We manufacture our steel pipe products in a wide range of specifications, which vary in diameter, length, thickness, finishing, steel grades, coating, threading and coupling. For more complex applications, including high pressure and high temperature applications, seamless steel pipes are usually specified and, for some standard applications, welded steel pipes can also be used. In addition to oil and gas applications, many of our products can also be used in low-carbon energy applications, such as geothermal, hydrogen and carbon capture and storage.

Casing. Steel casing is used to sustain the walls of oil and gas wells during and after drilling.

Tubing. Steel tubing is used to conduct crude oil and natural gas to the surface after drilling has been completed.

Line pipe. Steel line pipe is used to transport crude oil and natural gas from wells to refineries, storage tanks and loading and distribution centers.

Mechanical and structural pipes. Mechanical and structural pipes are used by general industry for various applications, including the transportation of other forms of gas and liquids under high pressure.

Cold-drawn pipe. The cold-drawing process permits the production of pipes with the diameter and wall thickness required for use in boilers, superheaters, condensers, heat exchangers, automobile production and several other industrial applications.

Premium joints and couplings.Premium joints and couplings are specially designed connections used to join lengths of steel casing and tubing for use in high temperature or high pressure environments. A significant portion of our steel casing and tubing products are supplied with premium joints and couplings. We own an extensive range of premium connections, and following the integration of the premium connections business of Hydril, we have marketed our premium connection products under the “TenarisHydril” brand name. In addition, we hold licensing rights to manufacture and sell the Atlas Bradford range of premium connections outside the United States and, since our acquisition of IPSCO in January 2020, we now own the “Ultra” and “TORQ” ranges of premium connections, which are used mainly in U.S. onshore applications.

Coiled tubing. Coiled tubing is used for oil and gas drilling and well workovers and for subsea pipelines.

Other products. We also manufacture sucker rods used in oil extraction activities and industrial equipment of various specifications and diverse applications, including liquid and gas storage equipment. In addition, we produce shell and tube heat exchangers for various applications, and we sell energy and raw materials that exceed our internal requirements.

Production Process and Facilities

We operate relatively low-cost production facilities, which we believe is the result of:

  • state-of-the-art, strategically located plants;
  • favorable access to high quality raw materials, energy and labor at competitive costs;
  • operating history of more than 60 years, which translates into solid industrial know-how;
  • constant benchmarking and best-practices sharing among the different facilities;
  • increasing specialization of each of our facilities in specific product ranges; and
  • extensive use of digital technologies in our production processes.

Our seamless pipes production facilities are located in North and South America, Europe and Asia and our welded pipes production facilities are located in North and South America and in Saudi Arabia. In addition, we have tubular accessories facilities, such as sucker rods, in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Romania, and the United States. We produce couplings in Argentina, China, Colombia, Indonesia, Mexico and Romania, and pipe fittings in Mexico. In addition to our pipe threading and finishing facilities at our integrated pipe production facilities, we have pipe threading facilities for steel pipes manufactured in accordance with the specifications of the American Petroleum Institute (“API”), and premium joints in the United States, Canada, China, Ecuador, Kazakhstan, Indonesia, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia and until recently in Denmark.

The following table shows our aggregate installed production capacity of seamless and welded steel pipes and steel bars at the dates indicated as well as the aggregate actual production volumes for the periods indicated.

 

In 2020, our production capacity for steel bars, seamless and welded pipes increased mainly as a result of IPSCO’s acquisition. Capacity of welded tubes in 2019 increased compared to 2018, due to the acquisition of a controlling interest in SSPC.

 

 At or for the year ended December 31,

 

2020


2019


2018

Thousands of tons

 


 


 

Steel Bars

 


 


 

Effective Capacity (annual) (1)

  4,485


  3,985


  3,935

Actual Production

              1,749


  2,835


  3,167

Tubes – Seamless

 


 


 

Effective Capacity (annual) (1)

  4,680


  4,300


  4,300

Actual Production

  1,914


  2,629


  2,798

Tubes – Welded

 


 


 

Effective Capacity (annual) (1)

  3,780


  2,980


  2,620

Actual Production

                  268


  671


  799

___________________________________________________________________________

(1) Effective annual production capacity is calculated based on standard productivity of production lines, theoretical product mix allocations, the maximum number of possible working shifts and a continued flow of supplies to the production process.

Production Facilities – Tubes

North America

In North America, we have a fully integrated seamless pipe manufacturing facility, a threading plant and a pipe fittings facility in Mexico; one steel shop, two seamless pipe rolling mills, five welded pipe manufacturing facilities and seven threading plants in the United States; and a seamless pipe rolling mill and a threading plant in Canada. We have recently closed a welded pipe manufacturing facility in Canada, and expect integrate seamless and welded pipe production in our remaining pipe producing plant.

Mexico

In Mexico, our fully integrated seamless pipe manufacturing facility is located near the major exploration and drilling operations of Pemex, about 13 kilometers from the port of Veracruz on the Gulf of Mexico. Situated on an area of 650 hectares, the plant includes two state-of-the-art seamless pipe mills and has an installed annual production capacity of approximately 1,230,000 tons of seamless steel pipes (with an outside diameter range of 2 to 20 inches) and 1,200,000 tons of steel bars. The plant is served by two highways and a railroad and is close to the port of Veracruz, which reduces transportation costs and facilitates product shipments to export markets.


The Veracruz facility comprises:

  • a steel shop, including an electric arc furnace, refining equipment, vacuum degassing, five-strand continuous caster and a cooling bed;
  • a multi-stand pipe mill, including a rotary furnace, direct piercing equipment, mandrel mill with retained mandrel, sizing mill and a cooling bed;
  • a premium quality finishing (“PQF”), technology mill (2 38 to 7 inches), including a rotary furnace, direct piercing equipment, mandrel mill with retained mandrel, sizing mill and a cooling bed;
  • a pilger pipe mill, including a rotary furnace, direct piercing equipment, a reheating furnace, sizing mill and a cooling bed;
  • six finishing lines, including heat treatment lines, upsetting machines and threading and inspection equipment;
  • a cold-drawing mill; and
  • an automotive components production center.

The major operational units at the Veracruz facility and the corresponding effective annual production capacity (in thousands of tons per year, except for the auto components facility, which is in millions of parts) as of December 31, 2020, are as follows:

 

Effective Annual Production Capacity

 

 (thousands of tons) (1)

Steel Shop

  1,200

Pipe Production

 

Multi-Stand Pipe Mill

  700

PQF Mill

  450

Pilger Mill

  80

Cold-Drawing Mill

  35

Auto Components Facility

  30

_______________________________________________________ 

(1) Effective annual production capacity is calculated based on standard productivity of production lines, theoretical product mix allocations, the maximum number of possible working shifts and a continued flow of supplies to the production process.

In Veracruz, located near our fully integrated seamless pipe manufacturing facility, we have a threading plant, which produces premium connections and accessories.

In addition to the Veracruz facilities, we operate a manufacturing facility near Monterrey in the state of Nuevo León, Mexico, for the production of weldable pipe fittings. This facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 15,000 tons.

In Mexico, beginning in April 2020, Tenaris’s plants operated at reduced levels due to the mandatory lockdowns and significant drop in demand for our products; however, activity started to increase by the end of 2020. For further information on the status of our operations see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview – The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

United States

In the United States we have the following production facilities:

Koppel, Pennsylvania: Tenaris’s first steel shop in the United States, located on an area of 89 hectares with an annual production capacity of approximately 430,000 tons. An $11 million investment is ongoing to expand the plant’s size range capabilities, allowing it to produce bars in a wider range of sizes and securing a reliable source of billets to supply both our Bay City and Ambridge rolling mills. With the completion of this investment, the facility will provide vertical integration through domestic production of a significant part of Tenaris’s steel bar needs in the United States. The facility also includes a heat treatment line. 

Bay City, Texas: Our 1.2 million square feet greenfield seamless mill was inaugurated in December 2017, and is located on an area of 552 hectares. The facility is the result of an investment of $1.8 billion and includes a state-of-the-art rolling mill with a capacity of approximately 600,000 tons per year (with an outside diameter range of 4 ½ to 9 5/8 inches), as well as finishing and heat treatment lines and a logistics center.

The Bay City facility comprises:

 a retained mandrel mill premium quality finishing (“PQF”);

 a fully automated intermediate warehouse;

 a heat treatment line; and

 a finishing line.

Ambridge, Pennsylvania: a seamless rolling mill located on an area of 19 hectares, with a capacity of approximately 380,000 tons per year (with an outside diameter range of  2 38 through 5 12 inches).

 

Hickman, Arkansas: This facility, which is our main U.S. welded production facility and covers an area of 78 hectares, processes steel coils to produce electric resistance welded (“ERW”), OCTG and line pipe with an outside diameter range from 2 38 to 16 inches and has an annual production capacity of approximately 900,000 tons. It includes:

  • a plant comprising two mills producing 2 38 through 5 12 inches API products with two finishing lines and two heat treatment lines;
  • a plant comprising two mills producing 4 12 through 16 inches API products with two finishing lines; and
  • a coating facility coating sizes up to 16 inches.

Additionally we have several facilities processing steel coils to produce ERW OCTG in various states, with a combined capacity of approximately 1 million tons with an outside diameter range of 2 38 to 16 inches.

 

These facilities are complemented by various threading facilities in different states, which are mainly dedicated to the finishing of tubes with premium connections.

In response to the abrupt and steep decline in product demand, most of our U.S. based facilities were temporarily closed during 2020; however, some of them are expected to resume operations during 2021 as market conditions continue to improve.

 

Canada

In Canada, we have a seamless steel pipe manufacturing facility located in Sault Ste. Marie, near the mouth of Lake Superior in the province of Ontario. The facility includes a retained mandrel mill, a stretch reducing mill and heat treatment and finishing facilities producing seamless pipe products with an outside diameter range of 3 1/2 to 9 78 inches. The effective annual production capacity of the facility is approximately 300,000 tons. We mainly use steel bars produced by our integrated facilities in Romania, Italy, Mexico and Argentina.

Until recently, we also owned a welded steel pipe manufacturing facility located in Calgary, Alberta, which processed steel coils into ERW OCTG and line pipe with an outside diameter range of 2 3⁄8 to 12 3⁄4 inches. The facility included a slitter, three welding lines and four threading lines. The effective annual production capacity of this plant for 2020 was approximately 400,000 tons. This facility has been shut down during 2020. Some of its equipment is being relocated to our Sault Ste. Marie facility in Ontario, as part of a repositioning plan for our industrial activities, which is estimated to be completed by the end of 2021, and is expected to strengthen the competitiveness and increase the domestic production capabilities of the Canadian market.

In addition, we have a threading facility in Nisku, Alberta, near the center of Western Canadian drilling area. The facility has ten computer numerical control (CNC) lathes dedicated to premium connections and accessories including related repairs.

 

South America

In South America, we have a fully integrated seamless pipe facility in Argentina. In addition, we have welded pipe manufacturing facilities in Argentina, Brazil and Colombia.

Argentina

Our principal manufacturing facility in South America is a fully integrated plant on the banks of the Paraná river near the city of Campana, approximately 80 kilometers north from the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Situated on over 300 hectares, the plant includes a state-of-the-art seamless pipe facility and has an effective annual production capacity of approximately 900,000 tons of seamless steel pipe (with an outside diameter range of 1 14 to 10 34 inches) and 1,300,000 tons of steel bars.

The Campana facility comprises:

  • a direct reduced iron (“DRI”) production plant;
  • a steel shop with two production lines, each including an electric arc furnace, refining equipment, four-strand continuous caster and a cooling bed;
  • two continuous mandrel mills, each including a rotary furnace, direct piercing equipment and a cooling bed and, one of them, also including a stretch reducing mill;
  • seven finishing lines, including heat treatment lines, upsetting machines, threading and inspection equipment and make-up facilities;
  • a cold-drawing mill; and
  • a port on the Paraná river for the supply of raw materials and the shipment of finished products.

Our local electric energy requirements are satisfied through purchases in the local market and by a 35 megawatts thermo-electric power generating plant located within the Campana facility.

The major operational units at the Campana facility and corresponding effective annual production capacity (in thousands of tons per year) as of December 31, 2020, are as follows:

 

Effective Annual Production Capacity

 

 (thousands of tons) (1)

DRI

  960

Steel Shop

 

Continuous Casting I

  530

Continuous Casting II

  770

Pipe Production

 

Mandrel Mill I

  330

Mandrel Mill II

  570

Cold-Drawing Mill

  20

___________________________________________

(1) Effective annual production capacity is calculated based on standard productivity of production lines, theoretical product mix allocations, the maximum number of possible working shifts and a continued flow of supplies to the production process.

 

In addition to our main integrated seamless pipe facility, we also have two welded pipe manufacturing facilities in Argentina. One is located at Valentín Alsina, south of the city of Buenos Aires. This facility includes ERW and submerged arc welding (“SAW”), rolling mills with one spiral line. The facility was originally opened in 1948 and processes steel coils and plates to produce welded steel pipes with an outside diameter range of 4 12 to 80 inches, which are used for the conveying of fluids at low, medium and high pressure and for mechanical and structural purposes. The facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 350,000 tons. The other welded facility, located at Villa Constitución in the province of Santa Fe, has an annual production capacity of approximately 80,000 tons of welded pipes with an outside diameter range of 1 to 8 inches.

Our plants in Argentina operated at technical minimums in response to mandatory lockdown measures implemented in March 2020; activity resumed gradually as most restrictions have been lifted. For further information on the status of our operations see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview – The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

In March 2021, Tenaris acquired fracking equipment from U.S.-based oil services company Baker Hughes in Argentina, allowing it to step up its services in the Vaca Muerta shale deposit on an expected rise in activity. The deal includes a pressure pumping fleet, a coiled tubing unit and related equipment. 

 Brazil

In Brazil we have the Confab welded pipe manufacturing facility, located at Pindamonhangaba, 160 kilometers northeast from the city of São Paulo. This facility includes an ERW rolling mill and a SAW longitudinal rolling mill. The facility, which was originally opened in 1974, processes steel coils and plates to produce welded steel pipes with an outside diameter range from 5 12 to 48 inches for various applications, including OCTG and line pipe for oil, petrochemical and gas applications. The facility also supplies anticorrosion pipe coating made of extruded polyethylene or polypropylene, external and internal fusion bonded epoxy, thermal insulation, concrete weight coating and paint for internal pipe coating. In 2020 we shut down and disassembled one minor production line and therefore slightly reduced the facilitiy’s annual production capacity which remains at approximately 500,000 tons.

Colombia and Ecuador

In Colombia we have TuboCaribe, a pipe manufacturing facility in Cartagena, on an area of 60 hectares, including a state-of-the-art finishing plant for seamless pipes. The total estimated annual finishing capacity is approximately 250,000 tons, with an estimated annual ERW production capacity of approximately 140,000 tons. This facility produces OCTG and line pipe products with an outside diameter range of 2 38 to 9 58 inches, and includes three ERW mills, one heat treatment line, one slotting line and three threading lines, including premium connections capacity. Inspection lines and materials testing laboratories complete the production facility. A 2 to 42 inches diameter multilayer coating facility complements our line pipe production facilities.

In addition, we have a coupling shop with fifty-four lathes, ten cutting machines, and two phosphatizing lines. Inspection and finishing lines complete this facility. The shop has an estimated annual production capacity of 2.3 million pieces, including API and premium threads.

In Colombia, Tenaris reduced its activity in 2020 following the imposition of mandatory lockdowns, experiencing a partial recovery in recent months, but still operating at reduced levels. For further information on the status of our operations, see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview  The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

In Ecuador we have a threading and finishing facility with an annual capacity of 35,000 tons, and a service center which is designed to support our RigDirect® strategy, both situated in Machachi.

Europe

In Europe, we have several seamless pipe manufacturing facilities in Italy and one in Romania, and a premium connection threading facility in the United Kingdom. We have recently dismantled a threading facility in Denmark.

In 2019, we entered into a joint venture agreement with Severstal to build and operate a welded pipe mill to manufacture OCTG products in Surgut, Western Siberia. Construction activities for the welded pipe mill are currently on hold while the joint venture partners assess changes in the relevant markets and the competitive environment to determine whether adjustments or changes to the project could be necessary. Our share in the joint venture is 49%.

Italy

Our principal manufacturing facility in Europe is an integrated plant located in the town of Dalmine, in the industrial area of Bergamo, about 40 kilometers from Milan in northern Italy. Situated on an area of 150 hectares, the plant includes a state-of-the-art seamless pipe mill and has an annual production capacity of approximately 650,000 tons of seamless steel pipes and 935,000 tons of steel bars.

The Dalmine facility comprises:

  • a steel shop, including an electric arc furnace, two ladle furnaces, two vacuum degassing and two continuous casters with their own cooling beds;
  • a continuous floating mandrel mill (the operations of which have been recently suspended);
  • a retained mandrel mill with two in-line-high-productivity finishing lines including one heat treatment;
  • a rotary expander with a finishing line including a heat treatment; and
  • two premium connection threading lines.

The major operational units at the Dalmine facility and corresponding effective annual production capacity (in thousands of tons per year) as of December 31, 2020, are as follows:

 

Effective Annual Production Capacity

 

 (thousands of tons) (1)

Steel Shop

  935

Pipe Production

 

Retained Mandrel Mill Medium Diameter (plus Rotary Expander for Large Diameter)

  650

______________________________________________________________

(1) Effective annual production capacity is calculated based on standard productivity of production lines, theoretical product mix allocations, the maximum number of possible working shifts and a continued flow of supplies to the production process.

The Dalmine facility manufactures seamless steel pipes with an outside diameter range of 146 to 711 mm (5.70 to 28.00 inches), mainly from carbon, low alloy and high alloy steels for diverse applications. The Dalmine facility also manufactures steel bars for processing at our facilities in Italy and elsewhere.

Our production facilities located in Italy have a collective annual production capacity of approximately 800,000 tons of seamless steel pipes. In addition to the main facility mentioned above, they include:

  • the Costa Volpino facility, which covers an area of approximately 31 hectares and comprises a cold-drawing mill and an auto components facility producing cold-drawn carbon, low alloy and high alloy steel pipes with an outside diameter range of 12 to 380 mm (0.47 to 15 inches), mainly for automotive, mechanical and machinery companies in Europe. The Costa Volpino facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 80,000 tons; and
  • the Arcore facility, which covers an area of approximately 26 hectares and comprises a Diescher mill with associated finishing lines. Production is concentrated in heavy-wall mechanical pipes with an outside diameter range of 48 to 219 mm (1.89 to 8.62 inches). The Arcore facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 150,000 tons.

In addition to these facilities, we operate a manufacturing facility at Sabbio which manufactures gas cylinders with an annual production capacity of approximately 14,000 tons or 270,000 pieces, and a large vessels plant inside the Dalmine facility, with a production capacity of around 2,500 finished pieces per year.

In order to reduce the cost of electrical energy at our operations in Dalmine, we constructed a gas-fired, combined heat and power station with a capacity of 120 megawatts in Dalmine. Our operations in Dalmine consume a share of the power generated at the power station, which has sufficient capacity to meet almost the whole electric power requirements of these operations. The additional energy needed to cover consumption peaks and the excess energy produced are purchased and sold to the market while heat is sold for district heating.

In Italy, Tenaris reduced its activity following the imposition of mandatory lockdowns imposed in March 2020, and for a limited period of time our Dalmine facility was used exclusively for the manufacturing of oxygen tanks to aid local hospitals and health centers. Over time, however, the facility gradually resumed operations. For further information on the status of our operations, see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview – The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

Romania

We have a seamless steel pipe manufacturing facility in northwest Romania, located in the city of Zalau, 530 kilometers from Bucharest. The facility includes a hot rolling mill and has an annual production capacity of approximately 250,000 tons of hot rolled pipes and 210,000 tons of finished products, of which 25,000 tons are cold drawn. The plant produces carbon and alloy steel tubes with an outside diameter range of 21.3 to 159 mm (0.839 to 6.26 inches) for hot rolled tubes and 8 to 120 mm (0.315 to 4.724 inches) for cold drawn tubes. We also have a steelmaking facility in southern Romania, located in the city of Calarasi, with an annual steelmaking capacity of 620,000 tons, supplying steel bars for European operations as well as to other rolling mills in our industrial system. The industrial center in Romania comprises:

 

  • a steel shop including an electric arc furnace, a ladle furnace and a continuous caster;
  • a floating mandrel mill;
  • four finishing lines, including heat treatment lines, upsetting machine, line pipe, threading, make-up and inspection equipment facilities;
  • a coupling shop;
  • an accessories line;
  • a cold-drawing plant with finishing area; and
  • automotive and hydraulic cylinders components’ production machinery.

United Kingdom

In Aberdeen, we have a premium connection threading, manufacturing and repair facility, which works as a hub to service our customers working in the North Sea region. The facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 20,000 pieces, with a production range of 2 3/8 to 20 inches.

Denmark

We had a facility for the manufacturing of casing and tubing accessories and the provision of casing and tubing repairs in Esbjerg. In November 2020, the facility was dismantled and the assets were transferred to other Tenaris production facilities.

Middle East and Africa

We have a controlling participation in SSPC, a welded steel pipe producer, which operates five production lines and produces welded pipes for the local oil & gas industry (OCTG and Line Pipe) and for the industrial and construction sectors. Annual capacity is 360,000 tons covering a diameter range from ½ to 20 inches. We also have a threading facility for the production of premium joints and accessories in Saudi Arabia, with an annual production capacity of 120,000 tons.  

Additionally, we have a premium threading facility in Kazakhstan. The state-of-the-art facility has the capacity to produce 45,000 tons of OCTG annually for threading seamless pipes and gas-tight premium connections to serve the local market.

 

In Nigeria we have a facility dedicated to the production of premium joints and couplings located in Onne. This plant comprises a threading facility for both API and premium connections with an annual production capacity of approximately 40,000 tons, inspection facilities and a stockyard. In addition, we own a 40% participation in Pipe Coaters, a leading company in the Nigerian pipe coating industry, located in Onne, which supplies a wide variety of products and services for the oil and gas industry, such as internal, anticorrosion, concrete and thermal insulation coatings for onshore and offshore (including deepwater) applications.

Asia Pacific

Our seamless pipe manufacturing facility in Asia, operated by NKKTubes, is located in Kawasaki, Japan, in the Keihin steel complex owned by JFE. The facility includes a floating mandrel mill, a plug mill and heat treatment and upsetting and threading facilities producing seamless steel pipe products with an outside diameter range of 1 to 17 inches. The NKKTubes facility produces a wide range of carbon, alloy and stainless steel pipes for the local market and high value-added products for export markets. The effective annual production capacity of the facility is approximately 260,000 tons. Steel bars and other essential inputs and services are supplied under a long-term agreement by JFE, which retains a 49% interest in NKKTubes through its subsidiary JFE Steel Corporation. On March 27, 2020, JFE informed Tenaris of its decision to permanently cease as from JFE’s fiscal year ending March 2024 the operations of certain of its steel manufacturing facilities and other facilities located at the Keihin complex. The closure of JFE’s Keihin facilities may result in the unavailability of steel bars and other essential inputs or services used in NKKTubes’ manufacturing process, thereby affecting its operations. Tenaris and JFE have engaged in discussions to seek mutually acceptable solutions. In any case, Tenaris believes that it has the technical capability to manufacture the products supplied by NKKTubes in its other facilities.

We own a facility for the production of premium joints and couplings in Qingdao, on the east coast of China. The facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 40,000 tons of premium joints. Additionally, we have a facility that produces components for the local automotive industry. In December 2020 we entered into an agreement with Baotou Steel to build a steel pipe premium connection threading plant to produce OCTG products in Baotou, China.

In addition, in Indonesia, we hold 89.17% of SPIJ, an Indonesian OCTG processing business with heat treatment, premium connection threading facilities, coupling shop and a quality-testing laboratory, including an ultrasonic testing machine, which has an annual processing capacity of approximately 120,000 tons. We also have a premium joints accessories threading facility in the state of Batam, which we integrated to our operations following the acquisition of Hydril.

Production Facilities – Others

We have facilities for the manufacture of sucker rods in Villa Mercedes (San Luis, Argentina), Moreira Cesar (São Paulo, Brazil), Veracruz (Mexico), Campina (Romania) and Conroe (Texas, United States). Our total annual manufacturing capacity of sucker rods is approximately 3.3 million units.

In Moreira Cesar (São Paulo, Brazil), we also have facilities for the manufacturing of industrial equipment. In many cases, we also provide the assembly service of this equipment at the client’s site.

In Italy, we have the Piombino facility, which covers an area of approximately 67 hectares and comprises a hot dip galvanizing line and associated finishing facilities. Production is focused on finishing of small diameter seamless pipes for plumbing applications in the domestic market, such as residential water, gas transport and firefighting. The Piombino facility has an annual production capacity of approximately 100,000 tons.

In addition, we have specialized facilities in the Houston area producing coiled tubing and umbilical tubing:

  • A coiled tubing facility of approximately 150,000 square feet of manufacturing space on 4 hectares. The plant consists of two mills and coating operations capable of producing coiled tubing products in various grades, sizes and wall thicknesses. A new continuous heat treatment line has been recently installed.
  • An umbilical tubing facility of approximately 85,000 square feet of manufacturing space on 6 hectares. The facility is capable of producing stainless or carbon steel tubing in various grades, sizes and wall thickness.

Sales and Marketing

Net Sales

Our total net sales amounted to $5,147 million in 2020, compared to $7,294 million in 2019 and $7,659 million in 2018. For further information on our net sales see Item 5.A. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Results of Operations”.

 

The following table shows our net sales by business segment for the periods indicated therein:

Millions of U.S. dollars

 For the year ended December 31,

 

2020

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tubes

  4,844

94%

  6,870

94%

  7,233

94%

Others

  303

6%

  424

6%

  426

6%

Total

  5,147

100%

  7,294

100%

  7,659

100%

 

30


Tubes

The following table indicates, for our Tubes business segment, net sales by geographic region:

 

 For the year ended December 31,

Millions of U.S. dollars

2020

2019

2018

Tubes

 

 

 

 

 

 

- North America

  2,108

44%

  3,307

48%

  3,488

48%

- South America

  660

14%

  1,240

18%

  1,284

18%

- Europe

  566

12%

  641

9%

  628

9%

- Middle East & Africa

  1,194

25%

  1,337

19%

  1,541

21%

- Asia Pacific

  315

7%

  345

5%

  292

4%

Total Tubes

  4,844

100%

  6,870

100%

  7,233

100%

 

North America

Sales to customers in North America accounted for 44% of our sales of tubular products and services in 2020, compared to 48% in 2019 and 2018.

We have significant sales and production facilities in each of the United States, Canada and Mexico, where we provide customers with an integrated product and service offering based on local production capabilities supported by our global industrial system. In the past few years, we have extended our integrated product and service model, which we call Rig Direct®, throughout North America, and we operate a seamless pipe mill at Bay City, Texas, which is strategically located to serve the Eagle Ford and Permian regions. On January 2, 2020, we completed the acquisition of IPSCO, which has further strengthened our local production capabilities and capacity to provide Rig Direct® services in the United States. Under Rig Direct®, we manage the whole supply chain from the mill to the rig for customers under long-term agreements, integrating mill production with customer drilling programs, reducing overall inventory levels and simplifying operational processes. We first introduced the Rig Direct® model to Pemex in Mexico in 1994, and since then we have supplied them with pipes on a just-in-time basis. Today, we supply a large majority of our U.S. and Canadian customers for OCTG products with Rig Direct® services.

Sales to our oil and gas customers in the United States and Canada are highly sensitive to oil prices and regional natural gas prices. In the past few years, the drilling of productive shale gas and tight oil reserves, made possible by new drilling technology, has transformed drilling activity and oil and gas production in the United States and Canada. Following 25 years of declining production, U.S. crude oil production began to increase in 2009 and rose significantly, from 5.6 million b/d in 2011 to 12.8 million b/d at the end of 2019. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and collapse in oil prices, production fell back to 10.8 million b/d at the end of 2020. Production of natural gas liquids (“NGLs”) has also increased significantly in the past few years in North America. This rapid increase in production, however, contributed to an excess of supply in the global oil market in 2014 and a consequent collapse in the price of oil, as other producers, were for a time unwilling to adjust their production levels to balance the market. Further rapid increases in production in 2018 and 2019 led to OPEC member country producers and other producers agreeing to cut production to balance the market and support oil prices. In 2020, however, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic led to a sudden and substantial reduction in global oil demand in the first half of 2020 and a collapse in oil prices. Global oil demand and prices are now recovering, as COVID-19 vaccination programs begin to be rolled out, economic activity recovers, and OPEC and other producer countries, including Russia, have implemented substantial production cuts to lower supply below demand and consequently reduce the level of excess inventories that had been built up. At the same time, U.S. shale producers are now restraining increases in investments in response to the post COVID-19 recovery of oil prices as they are finding it more difficult to access financial markets to finance production growth and are having to deleverage their balance sheets.


Natural gas production has risen rapidly over the past few years and the United States became a net exporter of natural gas for the first time in 2017 and has now become a significant exporter of liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) to global markets. In Canada, there has been a similar shift towards drilling of shale gas and tight oil reserves.

The drop in oil prices in the second half of 2014 led to a drastic reduction in drilling activity throughout North America until the second half of 2016 when activity began to recover in the United States and Canada as a result of sharply lower production costs and more stable oil prices. In 2017 and 2018, drilling activity recovered and oil and gas production increased in the United States and Canada but declined throughout 2019, before collapsing along with oil prices with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the first half of 2020. Activity has now started to recover but remains significantly below the level at the end of 2019.

The level of drilling activity in North America, and consequently demand for our products and services, could also be affected by actions taken by the governments of the region to accelerate energy transition. For example, the new Biden administration in the United States has temporarily halted leases for drilling rights on Federal lands and halted the Keystone pipeline development.

Demand for, and our sales of, OCTG products in the United States and Canada plummeted in 2015 and 2016, to less than a quarter of the level reached in 2014, affected by high inventory levels as well as the collapse of drilling activity. In 2017 and 2018, however, demand and sales recovered strongly as drilling activity increased and inventory levels returned to more normal levels. In 2019, demand and sales declined, as U.S. rigs decreased by approximately 25% in the year. During 2020, the U.S. rig count plummeted to a record low but began to recover in the fourth quarter.

During 2018, the U.S. government introduced Section 232 tariffs and quotas on the imports of steel products, including steel pipes, with the objective of strengthening domestic production capacity utilization and investment. The proportion of the OCTG market supplied by imports has declined from around 60% prior to the imposition of tariffs and quotas to around 40% at the end of 2020.

Our sales in the United States are also affected by the level of investment of oil and gas companies in exploration and production in offshore projects. The blow-out at the Macondo well in the Gulf of Mexico and the subsequent spillage of substantial quantities of oil resulted in a moratorium that halted drilling activity. The drilling moratorium was lifted in October 2010, when new regulations affecting offshore exploration and development activities were announced. Since then, drilling activity recovered but, in addition to oil price movements, could be affected by actions taken by the government to restrict drilling activity on Federal lands, which include the Gulf of Mexico.

Oil and gas drilling in Canada is subject to strong seasonality, with the peak drilling season in Western Canada being during the winter months when the ground is frozen. During the spring, as the ice melts, drilling activity is severely restricted by the difficulty of moving equipment in muddy terrain.

In Mexico, we have enjoyed a long and mutually beneficial relationship with Pemex, the Mexican state-owned oil company, and one of the world’s largest crude oil and condensates producers. In 1994, we began supplying Pemex with Rig Direct® services. In early 2018, we renewed our just in time agreement with Pemex for an additional five-year period.

At the end of 2013, Mexico reformed its constitution to allow increased private and foreign investment in the energy industry. Pursuant to these reforms, foreign and private investors are allowed to participate in profit and production sharing contracts and licenses and Pemex has been transformed into a state-owned production company, but ceased having a monopoly on production. In addition, a new regulatory framework was developed and contracts with foreign and private investors were awarded. More recently, the government has taken steps to strengthen the role and primacy of Pemex in oil and gas production in the country in a partial reversal of these reforms.

Following the 2014 decline in oil prices, drilling activity in Mexico and demand for our OCTG products plummeted as the financial condition of Pemex has deteriorated and the impact of investments from the energy reform process in Mexico had yet to take effect. In 2019, however, drilling activity at Pemex recovered as the Mexican government increased funding available for the company as part of a policy of arresting and reversing production decline and investments from the reform process have proceeded. The government, however, has halted further progress on the energy reform process and the financial condition of Pemex remains under stress.

South America

Sales to customers in South America accounted for 14% of our sales of tubular products and services in 2020, compared to 18% in 2019 and 2018.

Our largest market in South America is Argentina. We also have significant sales in Brazil and Colombia. We have manufacturing subsidiaries in each of these countries.

Our sales in South America are sensitive to the international price of oil and its impact on the drilling activity of participants in the oil and gas sectors, as well as to general economic conditions in these countries. In addition, sales in Argentina, as well as export sales from our manufacturing facilities in Argentina, are affected by governmental actions and policies, such as the taxation of oil and gas exports, measures affecting gas prices in the domestic market and other matters affecting the investment climate. Sales in Brazil are also affected by governmental actions and policies and their consequences, such as measures relating to the taxation and ownership of oil and gas production activities and the operations of Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. (“Petrobras”).

A principal component of our marketing strategy in South American markets is the establishment of long-term supply agreements and Rig Direct® services with national and international oil and gas companies operating in those markets.

In Argentina, we have a significant share of the market for OCTG products. We have longstanding business relationships with YPF S.A. (“YPF”), the Argentine state-controlled company, and with other operators in the oil and gas sector. We strengthened our relationship with YPF in 2013 through a long-term business alliance, which we renewed for an additional five-year term at the beginning of 2018, under which we provide Rig Direct® services with the objective of reducing YPF’s operational costs as it aims to increase production through investments in Argentina’s shale oil and gas reserves. Drilling activity fell significantly during 2019 after the electoral process in Argentina. In 2020, our sales were affected by ongoing uncertainties regarding the energy policies that would be adopted by the new government as well as the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic which led to the suspension of all drilling activity during a couple of months in the year. Activity began to resume towards the end of the year.

In Brazil, we have a longstanding business relationship with Petrobras. We supply Petrobras with casing (including premium connections) and line pipe products, most of which are produced in our Brazilian welded pipe facility, for both offshore and onshore applications. With the development of Brazil’s deepwater pre-salt complex, our mix of products sold in Brazil has evolved from one including mainly line pipe for onshore pipeline projects to one which includes large diameter conductor and surface casing and line pipe for use in deepwater applications. In 2020, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and collapse in oil prices have postponed mainly onshore drilling with some postponements also in offshore. Nevertheless, consumption of OCTG products in Brazil stabilized over the past four years, after falling in the period 2014-2016 as Petrobras had reduced its investments in response to budgetary constraints, concentrating on developing its most productive reserves in the pre-salt fields and halting other investments. Demand for line pipe for pipeline projects has declined to very low levels with only one major project implemented in the past six years. In response to market-opening measures and the attractiveness of the deepwater reserves, major oil companies have increased their investments in Brazil in the past years, while Petrobras is planning to focus investments in world class assets in deepwater, which could lead to increased activity in future years. Our sales in the local market are currently mostly concentrated on large diameter conductors and surface casing with connectors for the pre-salt and other offshore developments, as well as smaller diameter casing for use in offshore and in the remaining onshore exploration and production activity.

In Colombia, we have established a leading position in the market for OCTG products since 2006, following our acquisition of TuboCaribe, a welded pipe manufacturing facility located in Cartagena. Although the market grew rapidly when oil prices were high as the country encouraged investment in its hydrocarbon industry and opened its national oil company to private investment, drilling activity in Colombia was deeply affected by the 2014 collapse in oil prices and fell to a very low level in 2016. However, activity subsequently recovered in response to higher oil prices, but was again deeply affected with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and collapse in oil prices. As oil prices have now risen, drilling activity in Colombia is also recovering. Our principal customer in Colombia is Ecopetrol S.A., which we supply with Rig Direct® services and with whom we renewed a long-term agreement in the beginning of 2018. We have recently strengthened our industrial position in Colombia through investing in the installation of modern heat treatment, pipe threading and processing facilities which enables us to serve this market with more local industrial content and our customers with more efficient Rig Direct® services.

In Guyana, we have been providing casing for the development wells in the new Lisa deepwater offshore play since 2018 under Rig Direct® conditions.

 

We also have sales in Ecuador, supplying Petroamazonas Ecuador S.A. (“Petroamazonas”), the national oil company, as well as private operators. To increase local content, we have established a local OCTG threading facility in Machachi.

We were present in the Venezuelan OCTG market for many years and we maintained business relationships with Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. (“PDVSA”) and the joint venture operators in the oil and gas sector until the implementation of the OFAC sanctions. Additionally, we maintained business relationships with Chevron in Venezuela until April 22, 2020, when their general License 8E of the sanctions expired. Our sales in Venezuela, however, have declined to a low level and we do not foresee any significant recovery at this time.

Europe

Sales to customers in Europe accounted for 12% of our sales of tubular products and services in 2020, compared to 9% in 2019 and 2018.

Our single largest country market in Europe is Italy. The market for steel pipes in Italy (as in much of the European Union) is affected by general industrial production trends, especially in the mechanical and automotive industry, and by investment in power generation, petrochemical and oil refining facilities. Sales to the mechanical and automotive industries and for HPI and power generation projects in Italy and the rest of Europe over the past three years have been affected by lower prices reflecting increased competitive pressures, but volumes have been relatively stable.

In Europe we also have significant sales to the oil and gas sector, particularly in the North Sea. Demand from this market is affected by oil and gas prices in the international markets and their consequent impact on oil and gas drilling activities in the North Sea and other areas, like Romania. In addition, U.S. and European sanctions are affecting demand for our premium pipe products in Russia.

Europe is also a region which we expect will be at the forefront of developments in low-carbon energy, including hydrogen storage and transportation, carbon capture use and sequestration and waste-to-energy power generation. We are participating in these market segments where we expect to see growth in sales in the coming years.

Middle East and Africa

Sales to customers in the Middle East and Africa accounted for 25% of our sales of tubular products and services in 2020, compared to 19% in 2019 and 21% in 2018.

Our sales in the region remain sensitive to international prices of oil and gas and their impact on drilling activities as well as to the production policies pursued by OPEC, and, more recently, OPEC+ countries, many of whose members are located in this region. In the past few years, oil and gas producing countries in the Middle East, led by Saudi Arabia, have increased investments to develop gas reserves to fuel regional gas-based industrial development, which have positively affected their consumption of premium OCTG products. Saudi Arabia, in particular, has shown strong growth in sour and high pressure gas field drilling activity. They have also maintained and, in some cases, increased investments to offset decline and add oil production capacity. Additionally, in the eastern Mediterranean, vast reserves of natural gas have been discovered, some of which have been targeted for fast track development.

In Africa, international oil companies increased investments in exploration and production in offshore projects in 2012 and 2013 but began to postpone or reduce their investment commitments in 2014 due to the high cost of offshore project developments and a lower success rate in exploration activity. Since 2015, following the oil price collapse, exploration activity has been cut back and major project commitments have been postponed. The effect on demand was compounded by the high inventory levels held in the region.

In the Caspian, major oil companies operating in Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan increased their investments and drilling activity following the recovery of oil prices in 2017 and we opened a premium threading facility in Kazakhstan in 2019. More recently, however, our sales have been affected by the impact of the COVID-19 virus on the operations of our customers and the impact on drilling activity of adherence to the production cuts agreed by the OPEC+ countries in response to collapse of oil demand due to the pandemic.

In the past few years, uprisings affected drilling activity in countries such as Syria, Libya and Yemen and, in the case of Libya, the oil and gas industry was effectively shut down in 2011. In addition, in recent years, U.S. and E.U. sanctions have affected production and exports in Iran. 

Our sales in the Middle East and Africa could be adversely affected by political and other events in the region, such as armed conflicts, terrorist attacks and social unrest, which could materially impact the operations of companies active in the region’s oil and gas industry. Our sales in the region can also be affected by the levels of inventories held by the principal national oil companies in the region and their effect on purchasing requirements.

In 2018, we had a peak of sales in the Middle East and Africa region, boosted by sales of line pipe for offshore gas projects in the Eastern Mediterranean. In 2019 and 2020, sales in the Middle East rose while sales in Africa (including the East Mediterranean) were affected by the slowdown in drilling activity and investments in deepwater projects. We expect sales in the region to decline in 2021 as a result of various factors, including the slowdown in investments in drilling activity pursuant to the pandemic and reduction in oil demand and prices and ongoing inventory reductions at some of the region’s largest consumers like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

In January 2019, we completed the acquisition of 47.79% of SSPC, a listed welded steel pipe producer in Saudi Arabia. SSPC produces OCTG, line pipe and commercial pipe products mainly for the local market. It is qualified to supply Saudi Aramco for certain products. Through this investment, Tenaris has increased its local industrial presence in an important oil and gas market where policies are being implemented to diversify the economy and increase local manufacturing. Saudi Arabia continues to reinforce measures in favor of local content and, in July 2020, increased import duties on seamless pipe products from 5% to 10% and on welded pipe products from 5% to 15%. In August 2019 we were awarded a long-term agreement with Rig Direct® conditions, valued at $1.9 billion, to supply approximately half of the OCTG requirements of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company’s (“ADNOC”) in Abu Dhabi over the next five to seven years. In order to serve this market, we intend to expand our local service base and construct a new premium OCTG threading facility.

Asia Pacific

Sales to customers in the Asia Pacific accounted for 7% of our sales of tubular products and services in 2020, compared to 5% in 2019 and 4% in 2018.

We have a significant presence in the region with local production facilities in Indonesia, China and Japan and, in recent years, we established service centers in Australia and Thailand, but have recently closed the service center in Thailand.

Sales to Indonesia and other markets in South East Asia and Oceania are mainly affected by the level of oil and gas drilling activity, particularly offshore drilling activity. The recent collapses in the price of oil have deeply affected drilling activity and our sales throughout the region, where drilling is mainly onshore. In 2016, however, we won a significant long-term agreement to provide pipes with Rig Direct® services in Thailand which briefly made Thailand our largest market in the region, until this long-term agreement was concluded in 2020, anticipating changes in the ownership of oil and gas development concessions.

Our sales in China are concentrated on premium OCTG products used in oil and gas drilling activities. Over the past years, China has significantly reduced its imports of OCTG products as local producers compete ferociously in an oversupplied market. We continue, however, to seek new markets in niche applications and in 2016 we opened a components facility for processing pipes for use in airbags for automobiles. More recently, we have begun to supply pipes under a Rig Direct® contract for a shale gas operation. In 2020, we established a joint venture with Baotou Steel, a major domestic supplier of seamless pipes to the onshore oil and gas fields, for the construction of a premium threading facility located within our partner’s steelmaking facilities in Inner Mongolia. The new facility, which will finish pipes produced mainly by our joint venture partner, is expected to startup at the end of 2021. Our participation in the joint venture is 60%.

In Japan, our subsidiary, NKKTubes, competes against other domestic producers. The market for steel pipe products in Japan is mostly industrial and depends on general factors affecting domestic investment, including production activity.

Others

Our other products and services include sucker rods used in oil extraction activities, coiled tubes used in oil and gas extraction activities, industrial equipment of various specifications and for diverse applications, sales of pipe for construction activities from our Italian Piombino and U.S. Geneva (former-IPSCO) mills, and sales of raw materials and energy that exceed our internal requirements. Net sales of other products and services amounted to 6% of total net sales in 2020, 2019 and 2018.


Competition

The global market for steel pipe products is highly competitive. Seamless steel pipe products, which are used extensively in the energy industry particularly for offshore, high pressure, high stress, corrosive and other complex applications, are produced in specialized mills using round steel billets and specially produced ingots. Welded steel pipe products are produced in mills which process steel coils and plates into steel pipes. Steel companies that manufacture steel coils and other steel products but do not operate specialized seamless steel mills are generally not competitors in the market for seamless steel pipe products, although they often produce welded steel pipes or sell steel coils and plates used to produce welded steel pipes.

The production of steel pipe products following the stringent requirements of major oil and gas companies operating in offshore and other complex operations requires the development of specific skills and significant investments in manufacturing facilities. By contrast, steel pipe products for standard applications can be produced in most seamless pipe mills worldwide and sometimes compete with welded pipe products for such applications including OCTG applications. Welded pipe, however, is not generally considered a satisfactory substitute for seamless steel pipe in high-pressure or high-stress applications.

Over the past decade, substantial investments have been made, especially in China but also in other regions around the world, to increase production capacity of seamless steel pipe products. Production capacity for more specialized product grades has also increased. With the downturn between 2014 and 2016 in the price of oil and demand for tubes for oil and gas drilling, the overcapacity in steel pipe and seamless steel pipe production worldwide became acute, extending beyond commodity grades. This situation has been accentuated by the more recent COVID-19 induced collapse in demand and the prospect of an accelerated energy transition. The competitive environment is, as a result, intense, and we expect that this can only continue without substantial capacity reductions. Effective competitive differentiation and industry consolidation will be key factors for Tenaris.

Our principal competitors in steel pipe markets worldwide are described below.

  • Vallourec S.A. (“Vallourec”), a French company, has mills in Brazil, China, Germany and the United States. Vallourec has a strong presence in the European market for seamless pipes for industrial use and a significant market share in the international market with customers primarily in Europe, the United States, Brazil, China, the Middle East and Africa. Vallourec is an important competitor in the international OCTG market, particularly for high-value premium joint products, where it operates a technology partnership for VAM® premium connections with Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (“NSSMC”). Prior to the collapse in oil prices in 2014 to 2016, Vallourec increased its production capacity by building mills in Brazil (jointly with NSSMC) and, Youngstown, Ohio, acquiring three tubular businesses in the United States and Saudi Arabia, and concluding an agreement with a Chinese seamless steel producer, Tianda Oil Pipe Company (“Tianda”) to distribute products from Tianda in markets outside China. In early 2016, in response to accumulating losses, Vallourec announced a $1 billion capital increase, more than half of which was provided by a French government fund and NSSMC, who each agreed to increase their equity participation to 15%. At the same time, an industrial restructuring program was announced under which Vallourec reduced capacity in Europe, closing its rolling mills in France, combined its operations in Brazil with that of the new mill held with NSSMC, acquired a majority position in Tianda and bought out the remaining minority interest, and strengthened its cooperation with NSSMC for the development and testing of premium connection products and technology. Despite this restructuring program, Vallourec’s losses continued and its equity position has turned negative. Vallourec has recently announced a further financial restructuring, in which its current shareholders will be severely diluted and its creditors, including private equity investors, will assume effective control. This restructuring is expected to be completed in June 2021. Under this restructuring, NSSMC will exit its investment in the Brazilian mill and have its position in Vallourec diluted to around 3%.
  • Japanese players NSSMC and, to a lesser extent, JFE together enjoy a significant share of the international market, having established strong positions in markets in the Far East and the Middle East. They are internationally recognized for their supply of high-alloy grade pipe products. In recent years, NSSMC increased its capacity to serve international markets through the construction with Vallourec of a new seamless pipe mill in Brazil, and further strengthened its ties with Vallourec through participating in Vallourec’s 2016 capital increase and combining their respective Brazilian operations. As part of the latest financial restructuring of Vallourec, NSSMC will relinquish its participation in the Brazilian operation and cede its reference shareholder position in Vallourec.
  • In recent years, TMK, a Russian company, has led the consolidation of the Russian steel pipe industry, invested to modernize and expand its production capacity in Russia and expanded internationally through acquisitions into Eastern Europe and the United States. TMK also expanded in the Middle East through the acquisition of a controlling interest in Gulf International Pipe Industry LLC (“Gulf International Pipe”), a welded pipe producer in Oman. More recently, however, TMK adopted a strategy of monetizing its international assets by reducing its participation in Gulf International Pipe and selling IPSCO to Tenaris.
  • Over the past two decades, Chinese producers increased production capacity substantially and strongly increased their exports of steel pipe products around the world. Due to unfair trading practices, many countries, including the United States, the European Union, Canada, Mexico and Colombia, have imposed anti-dumping restrictions on Chinese imports to those regions. In 2009, the largest Chinese producer of seamless steel pipes, Tianjin Pipe (Group) Corporation Limited (“TPCO”), announced a plan to build a new seamless pipe facility in the United States in Corpus Christi, Texas; heat treatment and pipe finishing facilities have been constructed but steelmaking and hot rolling facilities have not been completed. As part of a financial restructuring, a 51% shareholding in TPCO was sold to Shanghai Electric Group. Although producers from China compete primarily in the “commodity” sector of the market, several of these producers, including Baosteel Group (“Baosteel”) and TPCO, have developed and are selling more sophisticated products, particularly in the domestic market.
  • The tubes and pipes business in the United States and Canada has experienced significant consolidation over the years, while new players have also emerged. Following the acquisitions of Maverick and Hydril by Tenaris and the earlier acquisition of North Star Steel by Vallourec, U.S. Steel Corporation acquired Lone Star Steel Technologies. In 2008, Evraz Group S.A. (“Evraz”) and TMK, two Russian companies, acquired IPSCO’s Tubular division, with Evraz retaining IPSCO’s operations in Canada and TMK acquiring IPSCO’s operations in the United States. Subsequently, Tenaris constructed a greenfield seamless pipe mill at Bay City, Texas and acquired IPSCO from TMK in January 2020, becoming the leading seamless pipe producer in the U.S., while US Steel integrated its seamless pipe business by building an EAF steel shop in Fairfield, Alabama, which started up in late 2020. At the same time, many new players have built, or announced plans to build, pipe mills in the United States. These include, in addition to TPCO, Boomerang LLC, a company formed by a former Maverick executive that opened a welded pipe mill in Liberty, Texas, in 2010; Benteler International A.G. (“Benteler”), a European seamless pipe producer that built a new seamless pipe mill in Louisiana, which opened in September 2015; and a plethora of welded pipe mills established by subsidiaries of foreign pipe producers, such as SeAH Steel (“SeAH”), of Korea and JSW Group (“JSW”), of India. North American pipe producers are largely focused on supplying the U.S. and Canadian markets, where they have their production facilities. In Canada, Tenaris recently closed its Prudential welded pipe mill in Calgary and announced an investment plan to concentrate production of seamless and welded pipes at its seamless pipe mill in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario.
  • Korean welded pipe producers, who have a limited domestic market, have expanded capacity in recent years and targeted the U.S. market for standard applications. They have gained a significant market position, despite the application of anti-dumping duties for unfair trading practices and being subject to Section 232 quotas. One of them, SeAH, has acquired and built local welded pipe production facilities in the U.S.
  • Tubos Reunidos S.A. (“Tubos Reunidos”) of Spain, Benteler International A.G. of Germany and Voest Alpine A.G. of Austria each have a significant presence in the European market for seamless steel pipes for industrial applications, while the latter also has a relevant presence in the U.S. and international OCTG markets, and in 2016, Tubos Reunidos opened an OCTG threading facility targeting international markets. In 2006, ArcelorMittal S.A. (“ArcelorMittal”) created a tubes division through several acquisitions and has mills in North America, Eastern Europe, Venezuela, Algeria and South Africa and has built a seamless pipe mill in Saudi Arabia.
  • In the Middle East, particularly in Saudi Arabia, which has implemented policies to encourage local production for its oil and gas industry, several pipe mills have been established, including a seamless pipe mill built by Jubail Energy Services Company (“JESCO”), a company established with majority participation from a state-backed industrial development company, and a seamless pipe mill originally built by a joint venture of ArcelorMittal and local shareholders (“AMTJ”). These local players have been strengthening their capabilities and are taking an increasing share of the pipes supplied to Saudi Aramco as well as exporting to other countries in the Middle East and the rest of the world. In January 2019, Tenaris acquired a controlling 47.79% participation in SSPC, a local welded pipe producer. In December 2020, the controlling shareholder of JESCO announced that it had signed an agreement to sell its 72% participation in JESCO to AMTJ. This transaction would be part of AMTJ’s proposed acquisition of 100% of JESCO.

Producers of steel pipe products can maintain strong competitive positions in markets where they have their pipe manufacturing facilities due to logistical and other advantages that permit them to offer value-added services and maintain strong relationships with domestic customers, particularly in the oil and gas sectors. Our subsidiaries have established strong ties with major consumers of steel pipe products in their home markets, reinforced by Rig Direct® services, as discussed above.

Capital Expenditure Program

During 2020, our capital expenditures, including investments at our plants and information systems (“IT”), amounted to $193 million, compared to $350 million in 2019 and $349 million in 2018. Of all capital expenditures made during 2020, $168 million were invested in tangible assets, compared to $314 million in 2019 and $318 million in 2018.

 

In 2020, we focused on enhancing automation and digitalization of our industrial processes, improvements on safety and environmental issues, product differentiation, and competitiveness.

The major highlights of our capital spending program during 2020 included:

·                      investments in our automation three year global plan covering all of our industrial system worldwide; new equipment and related infrastructure to improve safety conditions at our entire industrial system;

 

·                      the revamping of the electric energy (“EE”) substation and the upgrade of non-destructive test (“NDT”) inspection technology in heat treatments and ultrasonic test (“UT”) line at our Campana facility in Argentina;

 

·                      a new corrosion laboratory and the installation of a new 43/71 mega volt ampere (“MVA”) transformer in substation 21 at our Veracruz facility in Mexico;

 

·                      general improvements of McCarty premium plant in Houston, Texas, including the revamping of phosphate process, new lathes, new automatic handling, full revamping of level 2 and pipe traceability implementation;

 

·                      completion of construction of logistic yards in Houston, Texas.;

 

·                      the increase of capacity in the steel shop at our Calarasi plant, Romania; and

 

·                      improvements in thermal coating line and the revamping of the edge press in the large outside diameter (“LOD”) facility in Pindamonhangaba, Brazil.

Capital expenditures in 2021 are expected to remain in line with the level of 2020 including the completion of certain main projects started in 2020. Some ongoing investments include:

·                      the revamping of the steel shop at our Koppel facility in the United States;

 

·                      the industrial transformation of AlgomaTubes in Canada (new ERW forming and premium threading lines);

 

·                      a new premium threading plant in China in joint venture with Baotou Steel;

 

·                      a new yard and service center in Abu Dhabi; and

 

·                      initial actions to achieve the medium term target of reducing carbon emissions intensity by 30%.



In addition to capital expenditures at our plants, we have invested in digital information systems. Despite the crisis in the oil industry and the pandemic, we have ensured the connectivity of those of our people who have transitioned to remote working. Our focus has been on our industrial system through the execution of the Integrated Scheduling System Project which has been transforming the way we operate and make decisions, and on our commercial relationships through the integration with our customer/vendors which has enabled us to be faster, more flexible and more efficient.

Additionally, we have continued strengthening the protection of our information with our cybersecurity project and are integrating the former IPSCO operations with our systems.

Investments in information systems and other intangible assets totaled $26 million in 2020, compared to $36 million in 2019 and $32 million in 2018.

Raw Materials and Energy

The majority of our seamless steel pipe products are manufactured in integrated steelmaking operations using the electric arc furnace route, with the principal raw materials being steel scrap, DRI, hot briquetted iron (“HBI”), pig iron and ferroalloys. In Argentina we produce our own DRI from iron ore using natural gas as a reductant. Our integrated steelmaking operations consume significant quantities of electric energy, purchased from the local market. Our welded steel pipe products are processed from purchased steel coils and plates.

Although the weight of the different steelmaking raw materials and steel vary among the different production facilities in our industrial system, depending on the specifications of the final products and other factors, on average steel scrap, pig iron, HBI and DRI represent approximately 20% of our steel pipe products’ costs, while steel in the form of billets or coils represents approximately 16%, with direct energy accounting for approximately 4%.

The above raw material inputs are subject to price volatility caused by supply, political and economic situations, financial variables and other unpredictable factors. For further information on price volatility, see Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors – Risks Relating to Our Industry – Increases in the cost of raw materials, energy and other costs, limitations or disruptions to the supply of raw materials and energy, and price mismatches between raw materials and our products may hurt our profitability”. The costs of steelmaking raw materials and of steel coils and plates, decreased on average in 2020 compared to 2019 and continued with high levels of volatility; prices of raw materials increased sharply during the last months of 2020.

Steel scrap, pig iron and HBI

Steel scrap, pig iron and HBI for our steelmaking operations are sourced from local, regional and international sources. In Argentina we produce our own DRI and source ferrous scrap domestically through a wholly owned scrap collecting and processing subsidiary. In Italy we purchase pig iron and ferrous scrap from local and regional markets. In Mexico we import our pig iron and HBI requirements and purchase scrap from domestic and international markets. In Romania we source ferrous scrap mainly from the domestic market and we import pig iron. In the United States, we expect to source scrap from the local market once we reopen our newly acquired Koppel steelmaking facility.

International prices for steel scrap, pig iron and HBI can vary substantially in accordance with supply and demand conditions in the international steel industry. Overall costs for these materials were highly volatile during 2020, decreasing during the first half of the year, mainly driven by low consumption, and increasing by the end of the year along with steel prices. As a reference, prices for Scrap Shredded U.S. East Coast, published by CRU, averaged $274 per ton in 2019 and $260 per ton in 2020 – descending to values around $220 and ascending to around $355 per ton through the year.

Iron ore

We consume iron ore in the form of pellets, for the production of DRI in Argentina. Siderca’s annual consumption of iron ore during 2020 was approximately 115,000 tons, supplied mainly from Brazil by Vale International S.A. (“Vale”).

Iron ore prices at the beginning of 2020 were relatively stable around $90 per ton as global demand was subdued by the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. However, as steel production in China reached historically high levels, demand and prices for iron ore have risen since the middle of last year to their current levels of around $170 per ton.

The DRI pellet market in 2020 saw a downturn in demand as world steel production outside China declined, particularly in Europe, where the main consumers of this material are based. Pellet premiums averaged $36 per ton in 2020, 42% below 2019 levels. However, as the industry begins to recover worldwide the market is becoming very tight and prices are expected to rise considerably in 2021.

Round steel bars

We mainly satisfy our steel bars and ingots requirements with materials produced in our steelmaking facilities in Romania, Italy, Mexico and Argentina. We complement this internal supply with purchases of steel bars and ingots from third parties as required, and particularly for use in our seamless steel pipe facilities in Japan, Canada, Mexico and the U.S.

In Japan, we purchase these materials from JFE, our partner in NKKTubes. These purchases are made under a supply arrangement pursuant to which the purchase price varies in relation to changes in the cost of production. As a result of their location within a larger production complex operated by the supplier, our operations in Japan are substantially dependent on these contracts for the supply of raw materials and energy. JFE uses imported iron ore, coal and ferroalloys as principal raw materials for producing steel bars at Keihin. In March 2020, JFE, informed Tenaris of its decision to permanently cease the operations of certain facilities located at the Keihin complex in 2024. The closure of JFE’s Keihin facilities may result in the unavailability of the currently supplied steel bars and other essential inputs or services used in NKKTubes’ manufacturing process, thereby affecting its operations. Tenaris and JFE have engaged in discussions to reach a mutually acceptable solution. In any case, Tenaris believes that it has the technical capability to manufacture the products supplied by NKKTubes in its other facilities.

In Canada, we mainly source our steel bars requirements from our integrated facilities in Romania, Italy, Mexico and Argentina.

In Mexico, we source steel bars from Ternium’s Mexican facilities under an agreement which will be in effect until March 2022 and is renewable for another 12 months, granting us the right to purchase approximately 180,000 tons of steel bars.

In the United States, we currently use steel bars produced in our integrated facilities in Romania, Italy and Mexico and have been granted an exclusion from Section 232 tariffs for the imports of these steel bars. Additionally, we have a contract in place with Nucor Steel to purchase a portion of the steel bars requirements in our Tenaris Bay City mill. With the acquisition of IPSCO in 2020, we own our first steel shop facility in the United States in Koppel, Pennsylvania. After certain investments expected to be completed by the middle of 2021, this facility will also provide steel bars to our Tenaris Bay City mill.

Steel coils and plates

For the production of welded steel pipe products, we purchase steel coils and steel plates principally from domestic producers for processing into welded steel pipes. We have welded pipe operations in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Saudi Arabia and the United States.

Steel coil market prices decreased in 2020. As a reference, prices for hot rolled coils, HRC Midwest USA Mill, published by CRU, averaged $632 per metric ton in 2020 and $670 per metric ton in 2019. However, prices increased sharply in the last months of 2020, reaching $931 per metric ton in December, $1,278 per metric ton in February and continue to increase as of the date of this annual report.

For our welded pipe operations in the United States, a significant part of our requirements for steel coils are supplied by Nucor Steel which is our principal supplier in the United States. Nucor Steel has a steel coil manufacturing facility in Hickman, Arkansas, near to our principal welded pipe facility in the United States. To secure a supply of steel coils for our U.S. facilities, during 2020 we renewed a long-term purchase agreement with Nucor Steel which is due to expire at the end of 2021.


In Canada, we had long-term agreements with our main steel suppliers for our welded pipe operations with prices referenced to market levels in U.S. dollars (i.e., CRU HRC index), which terminated at the end of 2020 after we shut down our Prudential mill. Among such suppliers were ArcelorMittal Dofasco, which has steel coil manufacturing facilities in Hamilton, Ontario, and Algoma Steel, which has steel coil manufacturing facilities in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario. We maintain contact with these suppliers, planning for when we resume welded pipe operations after integrating welded pipe manufacturing equipment in our mill in Sault Ste. Marie.

We also purchase steel coils and plates for our welded pipe operations in South America (Colombia, Brazil and Argentina) principally from Usiminas and Gerdau S.A. (“Gerdau”) in Brazil, from Ternium Argentina S.A. (“Ternium Argentina”), a subsidiary of Ternium in Argentina, and from Ternium’s facilities in Mexico. In addition, in Brazil we also source plates and coils from international suppliers when not produced domestically. In Saudi Arabia, we mainly purchase steel coils and plates from the local market.

Energy

We consume substantial quantities of electric energy at our electric steel shops in Argentina, Italy, Mexico, Romania and starting in 2021 in Koppel, Pennsylvania.

In Argentina, our local electric energy requirements are satisfied through purchases in the local market and by a 35-megawatt thermo-electric power generating plant located within the Campana facility. In Dalmine, Italy, we have a 120-megawatt power generation facility which is designed to have sufficient capacity to meet most of the electric power requirements of the operations. The additional energy needed to cover the peaks of consumption and the excess energy produced are purchased and sold to the market while heat is sold for district heating. In Mexico, our electric power requirements are mainly satisfied by Techgen, a natural gas-fired combined cycle electric power plant in the Pesquería area of the State of Nuevo León, while a small portion of our energy requirements are furnished by the Mexican government-owned Comisión Federal de Electricidad, or the Federal Electric Power Commission. In Romania, we source electric energy from the local market.

We consume substantial volumes of natural gas in Argentina, particularly in the generation of DRI and to operate our power generation facilities. However, 2020 showed a reduction in gas consumption, due to adjusted levels of production. Tecpetrol, a San Faustin subsidiary, is our main natural gas supplier in Argentina under market conditions and according to local regulations.

We have transportation capacity agreements with Transportadora de Gas del Norte S.A. (“TGN”), a company in which San Faustin holds a significant but non-controlling interest, corresponding to capacity of 1,000,000 cubic meters per day until April 2027. In order to meet our transportation requirements for natural gas above volumes contracted with TGN, we also have agreements with Naturgy S.A. (formerly Gas Natural Ban S.A.), for a maximum transportation capacity corresponding to approximately 970,000 cubic meters per day. For the final transportation phase, we have a supply contract with Naturgy S.A. Both contracts with Naturgy S.A are in place until April 2021 and are expected to be renewed.

In addition to the normal amount of gas consumed at our Italian plants, we also require a substantial volume of natural gas in connection with the operation of our power generation facility in Italy. Our natural gas requirements in Italy are currently supplied by Eni S.p.A.

Our costs for electric energy and natural gas vary from country to country. In the last few years energy costs have remained generally flat due to the increasing availability of natural gas from shale plays and additional renewable energy generation at more competitive prices. In a context of uncertainty regarding future energy prices, the Argentine government launched in December 2020 a new gas plan to increase natural gas supply following a drop from the maximum levels reached in 2019. Because winter demand for natural gas continues to outpace supply, Argentina is required to import natural gas from Bolivia, Chile and LNG from the international market, in addition to using liquid fuel to generate electricity. See Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors – Risks Relating to Our Industry – Increases in the cost of raw materials, energy and other costs, limitations or disruptions to the supply of raw materials and energy; and price mismatches between raw materials and our products may hurt our profitability” and Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors – Risks Relating to Our Business – Adverse economic or political conditions in the countries where we operate or sell our products and services may decrease our sales or disrupt our manufacturing operations, thereby adversely affecting our revenues, profitability and financial condition”.



Ferroalloys

For each of our steel shops we coordinate our purchases of ferroalloys worldwide. The international costs of ferroalloys can vary substantially within a short period. Prices for the main ferroalloys consumed by Tenaris decreased significantly during 2020, compared to 2019, mainly due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, including lockdowns, economic recession, logistics limitations, etc. Ferroalloy prices have since moved to levels that are significantly higher than the average of the last four years as global demand for steel products has recovered rapidly, particularly in China.

Product Quality Standards

Our steel products (tubular products, accessories and sucker rods) are manufactured in accordance with the specifications of the API, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), the International Standardization Organization (ISO), the Japan Industrial Standards (JIS), and European Standards (EN), among other standards. The products must also satisfy our proprietary standards as well as our customers’ requirements. We maintain an extensive quality assurance and control program to ensure that our products and services continue to satisfy proprietary and industry standards and are competitive from a product quality standpoint with products offered by our competitors.

We currently maintain, for all our manufacturing facilities and services centers, a Quality Management System Certified to ISO 9001 by Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance and API product licenses granted by API, which are requirements for selling to the major oil and gas companies, which have rigorous quality standards. In addition, the majority of our testing laboratories are certified to ISO 17025. Our Quality Management System (QMS), based on the ISO 9001 and API Q1 specifications assures that products and services comply with customer requirements from the acquisition of raw materials to the delivery of the final product and services. The QMS is designed to ensure the reliability and improvement of the product and the manufacturing operations processes as well as the associated services. Additionally, we are in the process of certifying the QMS to API Q2 at some locations, a certification specifically developed for companies which offer services in the oil and gas industry.

All of our mills involved in the manufacturing of material for the automotive market are certified according to the standard IATF 16949 by Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance.

Research and Development

Research and development, or R&D, of new products and processes to meet the increasingly stringent requirements of our customers is an important aspect of our business.

R&D activities are carried out primarily at our global R&D network with its main office in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and specialized research and testing facilities located in Campana, Argentina, in Veracruz, Mexico, and Dalmine, Italy. Additionally, we have a Technology Center in Houston, Texas, where we develop our TenarisHydril Wedge technology. We strive to engage some of the world’s leading industrial research institutions to solve the problems posed by the complexities of oil and gas projects with innovative applications. In addition, our global technical sales team is made up of experienced engineers who work with our customers to identify solutions for each particular oil and gas drilling environment.

Product R&D currently being undertaken are focused on the increasingly challenging energy markets and include:

  • proprietary premium joint products (OCTG) including Dopeless® technology;
  • proprietary steels for various applications (oil and gas drilling and transportation, hydrogen transportation and storage, carbon dioxide transportation and injection, automotive, etc.);
  • heavy-wall deepwater line pipe, risers and welding technology;
  • tubes and components for the automotive industry and other mechanical applications;
  • large vessels for hydrogen storage and refueling stations;


  • tubes for boilers;
  • welded pipes for oil and gas and other applications;
  • sucker rods;
  • coiled tubing and
  • coatings.

In addition to R&D aimed at new or improved products, we continuously study opportunities to optimize our manufacturing processes. Recent projects in this area include modeling of rolling, heat treatment, non destructive testing and finishing processes and the development of different process controls, with the goal of improving product quality and productivity at our facilities.

We seek to protect our innovation, through the use of patents, trade secrets, trademarks and other intellectual property tools that allow us to differentiate ourselves from our competitors.

We spent $41.8 million in R&D in 2020, compared to $61.1 million in 2019 and $63.4 million in 2018.

Capitalized costs were not material for the years 2020, 2019 and 2018.

 

Environmental Regulation

We are subject to a wide range of local, provincial and national laws, regulations, permit requirements and decrees relating to the protection of human health and the environment, including laws and regulations relating to hazardous materials and radioactive materials and environmental protection governing air emissions, water discharges and waste management. Laws and regulations protecting the environment have become increasingly complex and more stringent and expensive to implement in recent years. Environmental requirements vary from one jurisdiction to another adding complexity to the operations of global companies, such as Tenaris.

The Paris Agreement, adopted at the 2015 United Nations Climate Conference, sets out the global framework to limit the rising temperature of the planet and to strengthen the countries’ ability to deal with the effects of climate change. If there is no meaningful progress in lowering emissions in the years ahead, there is an increased likelihood of abrupt policy interventions as governments attempt to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement by adopting policy, legal, technology and market changes in the transition to a low-carbon global economy. For more information on risks related to climate change regulation, see Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors - Risks Relating to Our Industry – Climate change legislation and increasing regulatory requirements could reduce demand for our products and services and result in unexpected capital expenditures and costs, and negatively affect our reputation.”

The ultimate impact of complying with applicable environmental regulation is not always clearly known or determinable because certain laws and regulations have been evolving in the past years or are under constant review by competent authorities. The expenditures required to comply with these laws and regulations, including site or other remediation costs, or costs incurred from potential environmental liabilities, could have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and profitability. While we incur, and will continue to incur, in expenditures to comply with applicable laws and regulations, there always remains a risk that environmental incidents or accidents may occur that may negatively affect our reputation or our operations. For more information on risks related to compliance with environmental regulation and product liability, see Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors - Risks Relating to Our Business– The cost of complying with environmental regulations and potential environmental and product liabilities may increase our operating costs and negatively impact our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.”

Compliance with applicable environmental laws and regulations is of utmost importance to the Company and a significant factor in our industry and business. We have not been subject to any significant penalty for any material environmental violation of applicable environmental laws and regulations in the last five years, and we are not aware of any current material legal or administrative proceedings pending against us with respect to environmental matters, which could have an adverse material impact on our financial condition or results of operations.


Insurance

We carry property damage, general liability and certain other insurance coverage in line with industry practice. However, we do not carry business interruption insurance. Our current general liability coverage includes third party, employers, sudden and accidental seepage and pollution and product liability, up to a limit of $300 million. Our current property insurance has indemnification caps up to $250 million for direct damage, depending on the different plants; and a deductible of $100 million.

Disclosure Pursuant to Section 13(r) of the Exchange Act

Tenaris

The Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (“ITRA”), created a new subsection (r) in Section 13 of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), which requires a reporting issuer to provide disclosure if the issuer or any of its affiliates knowingly engaged in certain enumerated activities relating to Iran, including activities involving the Government of Iran. Tenaris is providing the following disclosure pursuant to Section 13(r) of the Exchange Act.

In July 2015, the Islamic Republic of Iran entered into the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (“JCPOA”) with China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the U.S., which resulted in the partial lifting in January 2016 of certain sanctions and restrictions against Iran, including most U.S. secondary sanctions against such country. On May 8, 2018, the U.S. announced that it would cease participation in the JCPOA and would begin re-imposing nuclear-related sanctions against Iran after a wind-down period. Following the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA, the European Union updated Council Regulation (EC) No. 2271/96 of 22 November 1996 (the “EU Blocking Statute”), to expand its scope to cover the re-imposed U.S. nuclear-related sanctions. The EU Blocking Statute aims to counteract the effects of the U.S. secondary sanctions.

As previously reported, Tenaris ceased all deliveries of products and services to Iran by the end of October 2018, that is, during the wind-down period and before the full reinstatement of U.S. secondary sanctions on November 5, 2018. Tenaris has not, directly or indirectly, delivered any goods or services to Iran or Iranian companies during 2019 and 2020 and does not intend to explore any commercial opportunities in Iran, nor does it intend to participate in tender offers by, or issue offers to provide products or services to, Iranian companies or their subsidiaries.

As of December 31, 2020, the Company’s subsidiary, TGS, maintains an open balance for an advance made by Toos Payvand Co. for approximately EUR0.04 million (approximately $0.04 million) for goods that remained undelivered following the reinstatement of U.S. secondary sanctions.

All revenue and profit derived from Tenaris’s sales to Iran was recorded in the fiscal year in which such sales were performed and, therefore, no revenue and profit has been reported in connection with commercial activities related to Iran for the year ended December 31, 2020.

Tenaris has procedures in place designed to ensure that its activities comply with all applicable U.S. and other international export control and economic sanctions laws and regulations.

Tenaris’s Affiliates

Pursuant to Section 13(r) of the Exchange Act, Tenaris is also required to disclose whether any of its affiliates have engaged in certain Iran-related activities and transactions. No affiliated reported any Iran related activity for the year ended December 31, 2020.


C.  Organizational Structure and Subsidiaries

We conduct all our operations through subsidiaries. The following table shows the principal subsidiaries of the Company and its direct and indirect ownership in each subsidiary as of December 31, 2020, 2019 and 2018.

Company

Country of Incorporation

Main activity

Percentage of ownership at December 31, (*)

2020

2019

2018

ALGOMA TUBES INC.

Canada

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

CONFAB INDUSTRIAL S.A. and subsidiaries

Brazil

Manufacturing of welded steel pipes and capital goods

100%

100%

100%

DALMINE S.p.A.

Italy

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

HYDRIL COMPANY and subsidiaries (except detailed) (a)

USA

Manufacture and marketing of premium connections

100%

100%

100%

IPSCO TUBULARS INC. and subsidiaries

USA

Manufacturing of welded and seamless steel pipes

100%

NA

NA

KAZAKHSTAN PIPE THREADERS LIMITED LIABILITY PARTNERSHIP

Kazakhstan

Threading of premium products

100%

100%

100%

MAVERICK TUBE CORPORATION and subsidiaries

USA

Manufacturing of welded steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

NKKTUBES

Japan

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

51%

51%

51%

P.T. SEAMLESS PIPE INDONESIA JAYA

Indonesia

Manufacturing of seamless steel products

89%

89%

89%

PRUDENTIAL STEEL LTD. (b)

Canada

Manufacturing of welded steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

S.C. SILCOTUB S.A.

Romania

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

SAUDI STEEL PIPE CO.

Saudi Arabia

Manufacturing of welded steel pipes

48%

48%

NA

SIAT SOCIEDAD ANONIMA

Argentina

Manufacturing of welded and seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

SIDERCA SOCIEDAD ANONIMA INDUSTRIAL Y COMERCIAL and subsidiaries

Argentina

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

TALTA - TRADING E MARKETING SOCIEDADE UNIPESSOAL LDA.

Portugal

Holding Company

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS BAY CITY, INC.

USA

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS CONNECTIONS BV

Netherlands

Development, management and licensing of intellectual property

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS FINANCIAL SERVICES S.A.

Uruguay

Financial company

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS GLOBAL SERVICES (CANADA) INC.

Canada

Marketing of steel products

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS GLOBAL SERVICES (U.S.A.) CORPORATION

USA

Marketing of steel products

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS GLOBAL SERVICES (UK) LTD

United Kingdom

Holding company and marketing of steel products

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS GLOBAL SERVICES S.A. and subsidiaries (except detailed) (c)

Uruguay

Holding company and marketing of steel products

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS INVESTMENTS (NL) B.V. and subsidiaries

Netherlands

Holding company

100%

100%

NA

TENARIS INVESTMENTS S.àr.l.

Luxembourg

Holding company

100%

100%

100%

TENARIS TUBOCARIBE LTDA.

Colombia

Manufacturing of welded and seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

TUBOS DE ACERO DE MEXICO, S.A.

Mexico

Manufacturing of seamless steel pipes

100%

100%

100%

 

(*) All percentages rounded.

(a) Tenaris Investments S.a.r.l. holds 100% of Hydril's subsidiaries shares except for Technical Drilling & Production Services Nigeria. Ltd where it held 80% for 2019 and 2018.

(b) Prudential Steel Ltd. has been closed down and the pipe manufacturing operations of seamless, welded and premium products in Canada will be consolidated at the facility of Algoma Tubes Inc.

(c) Tenaris holds 97.5% of Tenaris Supply Chain S.A. and 40% of Tubular Technical Services Ltd. and Pipe Coaters Nigeria Ltd., 49% of Amaja Tubular Services Limited, 49% of Tubular Services Angola Lda and 60% of Tenaris Baogang Baotou Steel Pipes Ltd.

 

45


Other Investments

Ternium

We have a significant investment in Ternium, a Luxembourg company controlled by San Faustin, whose securities are listed on the NYSE. As of December 31, 2020, the Company held 11.46% of Ternium’s share capital (including treasury shares).

The Company is a party to a shareholders’ agreement with Techint Holdings S.à.r.l. (“Techint Holdings”), a wholly owned subsidiary of San Faustin and Ternium’s main shareholder, dated January 9, 2006, pursuant to which Techint Holdings is required to take actions within its power to cause one of the members of Ternium’s board of directors to be nominated by the Company and any directors nominated by the Company to be removed only pursuant to previous written instructions from the Company. The Company and Techint Holdings also agreed to cause any vacancies on Ternium’s board of directors to be filled with new directors nominated by either the Company or Techint Holdings, as applicable. The shareholders’ agreement will remain in effect so long as each of the parties holds at least 5% of the shares of Ternium or until it is terminated by either the Company or Techint Holdings pursuant to its terms. Carlos Condorelli was nominated by the Company as a director of Ternium pursuant to this shareholders’ agreement.

Usiminas

At December 31, 2020, Tenaris held, through its Brazilian subsidiary Confab, 36.5 million ordinary shares and 1.3 million preferred shares of Usiminas, representing 5.19% of its shares with voting rights and 3.07% of its total share capital.

Confab’s acquisition of the Usiminas shares was part of a larger transaction performed on January 16, 2012, pursuant to which Tenaris’s affiliate Ternium (through certain of its subsidiaries) and Confab acquired a large block of Usiminas ordinary shares and joined Usiminas’ existing control group. Subsequently, in 2016, Ternium and Confab subscribed to additional ordinary shares and to preferred shares.  

At December 31, 2020, the Usiminas control group held, in the aggregate, 483.6 million ordinary shares bound to the Usiminas shareholders’ agreement, representing approximately 68.6% of Usiminas’ voting capital. The Usiminas control group, which is bound by a long-term shareholders’ agreement that governs the rights and obligations of Usiminas’ control group members, is currently composed of three sub-groups: the T/T Group, comprising Confab and certain Ternium entities; the NSC Group, comprising Nippon Steel Corporation (“NSC”), Metal One Corporation and Mitsubishi Corporation; and Usiminas’ pension fund Previdência Usiminas. The T/T Group holds approximately 47.1% of the total shares held by the control group (39.5% corresponding to the Ternium entities and the other 7.6% corresponding to Confab); the NSC Group holds approximately 45.9% of the total shares held by the control group; and Previdência Usiminas holds the remaining 7%.

The corporate governance rules reflected in the Usiminas shareholders’ agreement include, among others, an alternation mechanism for the nomination of each of the chief executive officer (“CEO”) and the chairperson of the board of directors of Usiminas, as well as a mechanism for the nomination of other members of Usiminas’ executive board. The Usiminas shareholders’ agreement also provides for an exit mechanism consisting of a buy-and-sell procedure, exercisable at any time after November 16, 2022, and applicable with respect to shares held by NSC and the T/T Group, which would allow either Ternium or NSC to purchase all or a majority of the Usiminas’ shares held by the other shareholder.

Confab and the Ternium entities party to the Usiminas shareholders’ agreement have a separate shareholders agreement governing their respective rights and obligations as members of the T/T Group. Such separate agreement includes, among others, provisions granting Confab certain rights relating to the T/T Group’s nomination of Usiminas’ officers and directors under the Usiminas shareholders’ agreement. Those circumstances evidence that Tenaris has significant influence over Usiminas, and consequently, Tenaris accounts for its investment in Usiminas under the equity method (as defined by IAS 28).

Techgen

Techgen is a Mexican joint venture company owned 48% by Ternium, 30% by Tecpetrol and 22% by Tenaris. Techgen operates a natural gas-fired combined cycle electric power plant in the Pesquería area of the State of Nuevo León, Mexico. Tenaris, Ternium and Tecpetrol are parties to a shareholders’ agreement relating to the governance of Techgen.

In 2019, Techgen entered into a $640 million syndicated loan agreement with several banks to refinance an existing loan, resulting in the release of certain corporate guarantee issued by Techgen’s shareholders, including Tenaris.

Techgen’s obligations under the current facility, which is “non-recourse” on the sponsors, are guaranteed by a Mexican security trust covering Techgen’s shares, assets and accounts as well as Techgen’s affiliates rights under certain contracts.


In March 2021, the Mexican Congress approved a significant reform to the energy market in Mexico, which could negatively affect Techgen’s operations and our energy requirements in Mexico. For more information on the risks associated with the energy reform in Mexico see Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors – Risks Relating to Our Business – Adverse economic or political conditions in the countries where we operate or sell our products and services may decrease our sales or disrupt our manufacturing operations, thereby adversely affecting our revenues, profitability and financial condition”.

Global Pipe Company (“GPC”)

Global Pipe Company (“GPC”) is a joint venture company, established in 2010 and located in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, which manufactures LSAW pipes. Tenaris, through its subsidiary SSPC, currently owns 35% of the share capital of GPC. Through the shareholders agreement, SSPC is entitled to choose one of the five members of the board of directors of GPC. In addition, SSPC has the ability to block any shareholder resolution.


TenarisSeverstal

In 2019, Tenaris entered into an agreement with Severstal to build a welded pipe plant to produce OCTG products in the Surgut area, West Siberia, Russian Federation. Tenaris holds a 49% interest in the company, while Severstal owns the remaining 51%. The plant, which is estimated to require a total investment of $280 million is planned to have an annual production capacity of 300,000 tons.

 

During 2019, we invested $19.6 million in the project. In 2020, the parties completed all the engineering to get the construction permit but on-site activities faced some delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, no additional contributions were made during 2020.

 

In March 2021, the joint venture parties put on hold the construction activities, while they assess the impact of the changes in the relevant markets and competitive environment and determine whether any adjustments or changes to the project could be necessary.

 

Tenaris Baogang Baotou Steel Pipes Ltd. (“Tenaris Baotou”)


In 2020, Tenaris entered into a joint venture with Baotou Steel to build a premium connection threading facility to finish steel pipes produced by our joint venture partner in Baotou, China, for sale to the domestic market. Under the agreement, Tenaris will hold 60% of shares in the new joint-venture company, while Baotou Steel will own the remaining 40%.

 

The plant, which is estimated to require a total investment of $32.6 million, is planned to have a total annual production capacity of 70,000 tons. An initial investment of $29.8 million, which will enable the facility to produce 45,000 tons annually, is estimated to be completed during 2021 and to start operations at the end of the year. During 2020, Tenaris contributed approximately $2.3 million in the project.

D.  Property, Plants and Equipment

For a description of our property, plants and equipment, please see B. “– Business Overview – Production Process and Facilities” and “– Business Overview – Capital Expenditure Program.

None.

The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on, and should be read in conjunction with, our audited consolidated financial statements and the related notes included elsewhere in this annual report. This discussion and analysis presents our financial condition and results of operations on a consolidated basis. We prepare our consolidated financial statements in conformity with IFRS. IFRS differ in certain significant respects from U.S. GAAP.

Certain information contained in this discussion and analysis and presented elsewhere in this annual report, including information with respect to our plans and strategy for our business, includes forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. See “Cautionary Statement Concerning Forward-Looking Statements. In evaluating this discussion and analysis, you should specifically consider the various risk factors identified in Item 3.D. “Key Information – Risk Factors”, other risk factors identified elsewhere in this annual report and other factors that could cause results to differ materially from those expressed in such forward-looking statements.

Overview

We are a leading global manufacturer and supplier of steel pipe products and related services for the energy industry and other industries.

We are a leading global manufacturer and supplier of steel pipe products and related services for the world’s energy industry as well as for other industrial applications. Our customers include many of the world’s leading oil and gas companies, engineering companies engaged in constructing oil and gas gathering and processing and power facilities, and industrial companies operating in a range of industries. We operate an integrated worldwide network of steel pipe manufacturing, research, finishing and service facilities with industrial operations in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa and a direct presence in most major oil and gas markets.

Our main source of revenue is the sale of products and services to the oil and gas industry, and the level of such sales is sensitive to international oil and gas prices and their impact on drilling activities.

Demand for our products and services from the global oil and gas industry, particularly for tubular products and services used in drilling operations, represents a substantial majority of our total Tubes sales. Our sales, therefore, depend on the condition of the oil and gas industry and our customers’ willingness to invest capital in oil and gas exploration and development as well as in associated downstream processing activities. The level of these expenditures is sensitive to oil and gas prices as well as the oil and gas industry’s view of such prices in the future. Crude oil prices fell from over $100 per barrel in June 2014 to less than $30 per barrel in February 2016, before recovering to around $80 per barrel in the third quarter of 2018, but subsequently fell 40% in the fourth quarter of 2018 before recovering in 2019. Prices fell again to historically low levels in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the accompanying collapse in global oil consumption, but began to recover in the fourth quarter of 2020. North American natural gas prices (Henry Hub), which were around $4 per million BTU in 2014, also briefly fell below $2 per million BTU at the beginning of 2016, before recovering to average levels of $3 per million BTU, again falling back below $2 per million BTU in 2019 and are currently closer to $3 per million BTU.

In 2020, worldwide drilling activity, as represented in the number of active drilling rigs published by Baker Hughes, reflecting the collapse in oil consumption and prices in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, decreased 38% compared to the level of 2019. In the United States, the rig count in 2020 decreased by 54%, with an average of 433 active rigs, falling to a record low below 250 rigs in July and ending the year on a rising trend with more than 350 active rigs. In Canada, the rig count in 2020 declined by 33% compared to 2019, while in the rest of the world, it fell 25%, falling more gradually through the year.

Prior to the 2014 downturn in oil prices, a growing proportion of exploration and production spending by oil and gas companies had been directed at offshore, deep drilling and non-conventional drilling operations in which high-value tubular products, including special steel grades and premium connections, are usually specified. The success, however, of shale drilling operators, with their inherently short investment cycles, in adapting to lower oil and gas costs and increasing production, and the increasing share of oil produced in shale plays as a proportion of global supply, has led to a slowdown in new developments of complex offshore projects with long investment lead times in a context of low and more volatile oil prices, consequently affecting the level of product differentiation.

Our business is highly competitive.

The global market for steel pipes is highly competitive, with the primary competitive factors being price, quality, service and technology. We sell our products in a large number of countries worldwide and compete primarily against European and Japanese producers in most markets outside North America. In the United States and Canada, we compete against a wide range of local and foreign producers. Over the past decade, substantial investments have been made, especially in China but also in other regions around the world, to increase production capacity of seamless steel pipe products. Production capacity for more specialized product grades has also increased. With the downturn between 2014 and 2016 in the price of oil and demand for tubes for oil and gas drilling, the overcapacity in steel pipe and seamless steel pipe production worldwide became acute, extending beyond commodity grades. This situation has been accentuated by the more recent COVID-19 induced collapse in demand and the prospect of an accelerated energy transition. The competitive environment is, as a result, intense, and we expect that this can only continue without substantial capacity reductions. Effective competitive differentiation will be a key factor for Tenaris.

In addition, there is an increased risk of unfairly traded steel pipe imports in markets in which we produce and sell our products. In September 2014, the United States imposed anti-dumping duties on OCTG imports from various countries, including South Korea. Despite the duties imposed, imports from South Korea continued at a very high level. As a result, U.S. domestic producers have requested successive reviews of South Korea’s exports, which are ongoing. At the same time South Korean producers have appealed the duties imposed. Similarly, in Canada, the Canada Border Services Agency introduced anti-dumping duties on OCTG imports from South Korea and other countries in April 2015.

During 2018, in addition to anti-dumping duties, the U.S. government introduced tariffs and quotas pursuant Section 232 on the imports of steel products, including steel pipes, with the objective of strengthening domestic production capacity utilization and investment. Quotas were imposed on the imports of steel products from South Korea, Brazil and Argentina, while 25% tariffs were imposed on imports from most other countries, except Australia. The proportion of the OCTG market supplied by imports has declined from around 60% prior to the imposition of tariffs and quotas to around 40% at the end of 2020. This included, as a direct result of the fixed quota imposed on the imports of steel pipes from South Korea, that South Korean imports halved in 2019 compared to prior levels, but they have continued through 2020, despite the collapse in demand.

Our production costs are sensitive to prices of steelmaking raw materials and other steel products.

We purchase substantial quantities of steelmaking raw materials, including ferrous steel scrap, DRI, pig iron, iron ore and ferroalloys, for use in the production of our seamless pipe products. In addition, we purchase substantial quantities of steel coils and plates for use in the production of our welded pipe products. Our production costs, therefore, are sensitive to prices of steelmaking raw materials and certain steel products, which reflect supply and demand factors in the global steel industry and in the countries where we have our manufacturing facilities.

The costs of steelmaking raw materials and of steel coils and plates decreased during 2019. As a reference, prices for hot rolled coils, HRC Midwest USA Mill, published by CRU, averaged $632 per metric ton in 2020 and $670 per metric ton in 2019. However, prices increased sharply in the last months of 2020, reaching $931 per metric ton in December, $1,278 per metric ton in February and continue to increase as of the date of this annual report.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition

A novel strain of coronavirus (“SARS-CoV-2”) surfaced in China in December 2019 and subsequently spread to the rest of the world in early 2020. In March 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, a global pandemic. In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, countries have taken different measures in relation to prevention and containment. For example, several countries introduced bans on business activities or locked down cities or countries, including countries where Tenaris has operations (such as Argentina, China, Colombia, Italy, Mexico, Saudi Arabia and the United States). The rapid expansion of the virus, the surfacing of new strains of the virus in several countries, and the measures taken to contain it triggered a severe fall in global economic activity and precipitated a serious crisis in the energy sector.

While the extent of the effects of COVID-19 on the global economy and oil demand were still unclear, in March 2020, the members of OPEC+ (OPEC plus other major oil producers including Russia) did not agree to extend their agreement to cut oil production and Saudi Arabia launched a wave of additional supply on the market triggering a collapse in oil prices below $30 per barrel. This exacerbated what soon became clear was an unprecedented situation of oversupply, caused primarily by the sudden and dramatic fall in oil consumption consequent to the measures taken to contain the spread of the virus around the world. Although OPEC+ subsequently reached an agreement to cut production by as much as 9.7 million barrels per day, the situation of acute oversupply continued, causing oil prices to hit record lows. By the end of trading on April 20, 2020, the West Texas Intermediate (“WTI”) forward price for delivery in May, which had to be closed out the following day, fell to a negative value for the first time in history, as oil storage facilities were completely committed, and producers were forced to pay buyers to take their barrels. Since then, the price of oil has been recovering and currently stands above the level of $55 per barrel, bolstered by the actions to cut production taken by OPEC+ and the recovery of oil demand, as the global economy, especially industrial production, recovers and COVID-19 vaccination programs begin. With consumption exceeding production excess oil inventories built up in the first half of 2020 are being gradually reduced. The worldwide demand for oil, which stood at 100 million barrels per day in December 2019, fell to around 75-80 million barrels per day in April 2020 before recovering to around 94 million barrels per day in December 2020. Drilling activity in the United States and Canada, where it was most affected, has begun to recover but remains well below the level it was prior to the pandemic, while, in the rest of the world, any recovery will take longer following the reductions in investment plans made by oil and gas companies in response to the pandemic. There remains considerable uncertainty about the future duration and extent of the pandemic with new and more contagious variants of the COVID-19 virus appearing and the vaccination programs still in their early stages.

  • Status of our operations

Although restrictions imposed in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic have been lifted in some countries where Tenaris operates, it is currently not possible to predict whether such measures will be relaxed further, reinstated or made more stringent. In addition, Tenaris has adjusted production levels at its facilities, which are operating with reduced volumes in line with market demand, and may undertake additional adjustments.

In order to safeguard the health and safety of its employees, customers and suppliers, Tenaris has taken preventive measures, including remote working for the majority of professional employees, restricting onsite access to essential operational personnel, keeping personnel levels at a minimum, implementing a special operations protocol to ensure social distancing and providing medical assistance and supplies to onsite employees. As of the date of this annual report, remote work and other work arrangements have not materially adversely affected Tenaris’s ability to conduct operations. In addition, these alternative working arrangements have not adversely affected our financial reporting systems, internal control over financial reporting or disclosure controls and procedures.


  • Risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing oil & gas crisis poses the following main risks and challenges to Tenaris:

  Global oil demand may fail to recover its former level or even decrease further in the future, driving down prices even more or keeping them at very low levels, which would exert downward pressure on sales and margins of oil and gas companies, leading to further reductions and even generalized suspension of drilling activities (in the United States or elsewhere) and, as a result, materially adversely affecting our sales and financial position.

 Tenaris or its employees, contractors, suppliers, customers and other business partners may be prevented from conducting certain business activities for a prolonged or indefinite period of time. In addition, employees in some or all of our facilities, or those of our contracts, suppliers, customers or other business partners, may refuse to work due to health concerns while the COVID-19 outbreak is ongoing, If that happens, the continuity of our future operations may be severely affected.

 A continuing spread of COVID-19 and new strains of the virus may affect the availability and price of raw materials, energy and other inputs used by Tenaris in its operations. Any such disruption or increased prices could adversely affect Tenaris’s profitability.

  • Mitigating actions

In order to mitigate the impact of expected lower sales, starting from the first quarter 2020, Tenaris implemented a worldwide restructuring program and cost containment plan aimed at preserving its financial resources and overall liquidity position and maintaining the continuity of its operations. These actions included:

 adjusting the level of our operations and workforce around the world, including through the temporary closure of certain facilities or production lines;

 introducing efficiency and productivity improvements throughout Tenaris’s industrial system;

 reducing our fixed cost structure, including through pay reductions for senior management and board members, as well as R&D expenses, for a total annual savings of approximately $230 million on a yearly basis;

 reducing capital expenditures by $157 million in comparison to 2019 levels;

 reducing working capital, especially inventories, in accordance with the expected levels of activity; and

 increasing our focus on managing customer credit conditions.

As of the date of this annual report, these restructuring and cost containment initiatives are largely complete and the principal objectives have been achieved; some residual actions are still ongoing.

As part of these liquidity preservation initiatives, on June 2, 2020, the Annual Shareholders Meeting approved a proposal that no further dividends be distributed in respect of fiscal year 2019 beyond the interim dividend of approximately $153 million already paid in November 2019. However, as quarterly results started to recover, on November 4, 2020, the Company’s board of directors approved the payment of an interim dividend of $0.07 per share ($0.14 per ADS), or approximately $83 million, which was paid on November 25, 2020. On February 24, 2021, the Company’s board of directors approved a proposal for the payment of an interim dividend. If the annual dividend is approved by the shareholders, a dividend of $0.14 per share ($0.28 per ADS), or approximately $165 million will be paid on May 26, 2021, with an ex-dividend date of May 24, 2021.

As of the date of this annual report, our capital and financial resources, and overall liquidity position, have not been materially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Tenaris has in place non-committed credit facilities and management believes Tenaris has adequate access to credit markets. In addition, Tenaris has a net cash position1 of approximately $1,085 million as of the end of December 2020 and a manageable debt amortization schedule.

                                                       

1 Net cash position is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.

Considering our financial position and the funds provided by operating activities, management believes that we have sufficient resources to satisfy our current working capital needs, service our debt and address short-term changes in business conditions for the next 12 months.

Considering the global situation, the Company has renegotiated and continues to renegotiate existing contractual obligations with its counterparties to modify its commitments in light of the decrease in activity.

Management does not expect to disclose or incur in any material COVID-19-related contingency, and it considers its allowance for doubtful accounts sufficient to cover risks that could arise from credits with customers in accordance with IFRS 9.

Summary of results

Our sales and results in 2020 were severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the measures taken around the world to contain it, the impact this had on global oil demand which caused a collapse in prices and rapid build up of excess inventories, and the consequent drop in investments in drilling activity by our oil and gas customers. While sales held up relatively well in the Eastern Hemisphere regions, they plunged, along with drilling activity, in the Americas, where, in Argentina for example, drilling activity was halted for several months. Overall, sales declined 29% year on year and EBITDA1, which included $142 million of restructuring charges fell 53% to $638 million, reflecting the lower absorption of fixed costs as well as lower sales, while we met our target for a reduction in our fixed cost structure of $230 million annualized by the end of the year.

For the year, we recorded a net loss attributable to owners of the parent company of $634 million, or ($1.07) per ADS. This included an impairment charge of $622 million on the carrying value of goodwill and other assets in the United States, mainly related to the former IPSCO business and our welded pipe operations.

Cash flow provided by operating activities amounted to $1.5 billion during 2020, as we exceeded our target for reductions in working capital. Capital expenditures were also reduced in line with our target of $193 million in 2020, compared to the $350 million invested in 2019. Free cash flow2, which amounted to $1.3 billion (26% of revenues) in 2020, exceeded the $1.2 billion (16%) we generated in 2019.

Our financial position at December 31, 2020 amounted to a net cash position3 of $1.1 billion ($1.7 billion of liquid assets less $0.6 billion of debt), after having paid $1.0 billion for the acquisition of IPSCO in January 2020.

Climate change

The Company’s board of directors approved a medium-term target to reduce the carbon emissions intensity rate of its operations by 2030 by 30%, compared to its level in 2018, considering scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions. We aim to achieve this target by using a higher proportion of recycled steel scrap in the metallic mix, investments to increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy for part of our energy requirements.

This target forms part of a broader long-term objective of reaching carbon neutrality. Our ability to achieve this objective will depend on the development of emerging technologies and market and regulatory conditions, including carbon pricing and customer support. To further this objective, we plan to actively pursue the development of technologies involving the use of hydrogen and carbon capture, with partners, including our affiliated company Tenova, and participate in pilot projects such as the one we recently announced to use hydrogen in our Dalmine steel shop in Italy.

To accelerate the fulfilment of these targets, we will implement the use of an internal carbon price at a minimum of $80/ton for evaluating investments and more generally in our operations.

The Company’s board of directors nominated its Vice-Chairman, Germán Curá, to oversee the development and implementation of the Company’s strategy for addressing climate change going forward.

Outlook

With vaccination programs starting to be rolled out in many countries, economic activity is recovering in many sectors, though lockdowns are still being implemented to contain the spread of new and more infectious variants of the original COVID-19 strain. Global oil consumption is increasing along with industrial production and mobility, while OPEC+ countries continue to contain production levels and Saudi Arabia is implementing an additional production cut during February and March. Oil prices have returned to levels where selective investment activity could move forward and natural gas prices have also increased following temporary market shortages due to weather events and production outages.

Drilling activity in the United States and Canada has risen over the past three months, as it has in Latin America, and may continue to rise further through the year. In the Eastern Hemisphere, drilling activity may be close to bottoming out but we do not expect any significant recovery this year.

                                                       

1 EBITDA is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.

2 Free cash flow is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.

3 Net cash position is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.


In this still uncertain environment, we anticipate a gradual recovery in sales through most of the year. In the first quarter, however, our EBITDA4 will be impacted by approximately $20 million in additional costs and production losses in the United States and Mexico associated to this month’s Texas gas and power shortages. After a first quarter EBITDA similar to that of the fourth quarter 2020, from the second quarter, EBITDA is expected to increase with margins stabilizing around 20% as price increases compensate for higher raw material costs.

Functional and presentation currency

The functional and presentation currency of the Company is the U.S. dollar. The U.S. dollar is the currency that best reflects the economic substance of the underlying events and circumstances relevant to Tenaris’s global operations.

Except for the Brazilian and Italian subsidiaries whose functional currencies are their local currencies, Tenaris determined that the functional currency of its other subsidiaries is the U.S. dollar, based on the following principal considerations:

  • sales are mainly negotiated, denominated and settled in U.S. dollars. If priced in a currency other than the U.S. dollar, the sales price may consider exposure to fluctuation in the exchange rate versus the U.S. dollar;
  • prices of their critical raw materials and inputs are priced and settled in U.S. dollars;
  • transaction and operational environment and the cash flow of these operations have the U.S. dollars as reference currency;
  • significant level of integration of local operations within Tenaris’s international global distribution network;
  • net financial assets and liabilities are mainly received and maintained in U.S. dollars; and
  • the exchange rate of certain legal currencies has long been affected by recurring and severe economic crises.

Critical Accounting Estimates

This discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on our audited consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with IFRS. IFRS differs in certain significant aspects from U.S. GAAP.

The preparation of our audited consolidated financial statements and related disclosures in conformity with IFRS requires us to make estimates and assumptions that might affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities, the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities and the reported amounts of revenue and expenses. Management evaluates its accounting estimates and assumptions, including those related to accounting for business combinations; impairment of long-lived tangible and intangible assets; assets useful lives; deferred income tax; obsolescence of inventory; doubtful accounts; post-employment benefits; and loss contingencies, and revises them when appropriate. Management bases its estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions it believes to be reasonable under the circumstances. These estimates form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Although management believes that these estimates and assumptions are reasonable, they are based upon information available at the time they are made. Actual results may differ significantly from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions.

Our most critical accounting estimates are those that are most important to the portrayal of our financial condition and results of operations, and which require us to make our most difficult and subjective judgments, often as a result of the need to make estimates of matters that are inherently uncertain. Our most critical accounting estimates and judgments are the following:

Accounting for business combinations

To account for our business combinations we use the acquisition method, which requires the acquired assets and assumed liabilities to be recorded at their respective fair value as of the acquisition date. The determination of fair values of assets acquired, liabilities and contingent liabilities assumed and determination of useful lives, requires us to make estimates and use valuation techniques, including the use of independent valuators, when market value is not readily available. The excess of the aggregate of the consideration transferred and the amount of any non-controlling interest in the acquiree over the fair value of the identifiable net assets acquired is recorded as goodwill. If this is less than the fair value of the net assets of the subsidiary acquired, the difference is recognized directly in the income statement.

                                                       

1 EBITDA is a non-IFRS alternative performance measures—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.

Impairment and recoverability of goodwill and other assets

Long-lived assets including identifiable intangible assets are reviewed for impairment at the lowest level for which there are separately identifiable cash flows, or cash generating units (CGU). Most of the Company’s principal subsidiaries that constitute a CGU have a single main production facility and, accordingly, each of such subsidiary represents the lowest level of asset aggregation that generates largely independent cash inflows.

Assets that are subject to amortization or depreciation are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable. Intangible assets with indefinite useful lives, including goodwill, are subject to at least an annual impairment test. If events or circumstances indicate that the carrying amount value may be impaired, impairment tests are performed more frequently.

In assessing whether there is any indication that a CGU may be impaired, external and internal sources of information are analyzed. Material facts and circumstances specifically considered in the analysis usually include the discount rate used in Tenaris’s cash flow projections and the business condition in terms of competitive and economic factors, such as the cost of raw materials, oil and gas prices, capital expenditure programs for Tenaris’s customers and the evolution of the rig count.

An impairment loss is recognized for the amount by which the asset’s carrying amount exceeds its recoverable amount. The recoverable amount is the higher between the asset’s value in use and fair value less costs of disposal. Any impairment loss is allocated to reduce the carrying amount of the assets of the CGU in the following order:

(a) first, to reduce the carrying amount of any goodwill allocated to the CGU; and

(b) then, to the other assets of the unit (group of units) pro-rata on the basis of the carrying amount of each asset in the unit (group of units), considering not to reduce the carrying amount of the asset below the highest of its fair value less cost of disposal, its value in use or zero.

For purposes of calculating the fair value less costs of disposal, Tenaris uses the estimated value of future cash flows that a market participant could generate from the corresponding CGU.

Management judgment is required to estimate discounted future cash flows. Actual cash flows and values could vary significantly from the forecasted future cash flows and related values derived using discounting techniques.

Non-financial assets other than goodwill that suffered an impairment are reviewed for possible reversal at each reporting date.

In March 2020, as a result of the deterioration of business conditions and in light of the presence of impairment indicators for its assets in the United States, Tenaris wrote down goodwill and other long lived assets recording an impairment charge of approximately $622 million, impacting the carrying value of the goodwill associated with the CGUs OCTG USA, IPSCO and Coiled Tubing in the amount of $225 million, $357 million and $4 million respectively, and the carrying value of fixed assets of the CGU Rods USA for $36 million. Out of the total amount, $582 million was allocated to the Tubes segment. No impairment charges were recorded for the years 2019 and 2018. For more information on impairment and recoverability of goodwill and other assets, see “II. Accounting Policies H. Impairment of non-financial assets” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report. For information on impairment charges on our U.S. operations, see note 5 “Impairment Charge” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

Reassessment of Property, Plant and Equipment Assets Useful Lives

Property, plant and equipment are stated at directly attributable historical acquisition or construction cost less accumulated depreciation and impairment losses, if any. Property, plant and equipment acquired through acquisitions accounted for as business combinations are valued initially at fair market value of the assets acquired. Depreciation of the cost of the asset (apart from land, which is not depreciated) to its residual value over its estimated useful life, is done using the straight line method. The depreciation method is reviewed at each year end. Estimating useful lives for depreciation is particularly difficult as the service lives of assets are also impacted by maintenance and changes in technology, and our ability to adapt technological innovation to the existing asset base. In accordance with IAS 16,Property, Plant and Equipment”, the depreciation method, the residual value and the useful life of an asset must be reviewed at least at each financial year-end, and, if expectations differ from previous estimates, the change must be treated as a change in an accounting estimate. Management’s re-estimation of assets useful lives, performed in accordance with IAS 16, “Property, Plant and Equipment”, resulted in additional depreciation expenses for 2020 of $45.0 million and did not materially affect depreciation expenses for 2019 and 2018. However, if management’s estimates prove incorrect, the carrying value of plant and equipment and its useful lives may be required to be reduced from amounts currently recorded. Any such reductions may materially affect asset values and results of operations.


Reassessment of Useful Lives of Customer Relationships

In accordance with IFRS 3, "Business Combinations" and IAS 38, “Intangible Assets” Tenaris has recognized the value of customer relationships separately from goodwill attributable to the acquisition of Maverick and Hydril groups, as well as the more recent acquisition of SSPC and IPSCO.

Customer relationships acquired in a business combination are recognized at fair value at the acquisition date, have a finite useful life and are carried at cost less accumulated amortization. Amortization is calculated using the straight line method over the initial expected useful life of approximately 14 years for Maverick, 10 years for Hydril, 9 years for SSPC and 3 years for IPSCO.

In 2018 the Company reviewed the useful life of Maverick Tubes' customer relationships and decided to reduce the remaining useful life from 2 years to zero, consequently a higher amortization charge of approximately $109 million was recorded in the Consolidated Income Statement under Selling, general and administrative expenses for the year ended December 31, 2018.

As of December 31, 2020 the net book value of IPSCO’s customer relationships amounted to $51.3 million with a residual useful life of 2 years and SSPC’s customer relationships amounted to $63.8 million, with a residual useful life of 7 years, while Maverick’s and Hydril’s customer relationships are fully amortized.

Management’s re-estimation of assets useful lives, performed in accordance with IAS 38, did not materially affect amortization expenses for 2020 and 2019.

Allowance for Obsolescence of Supplies and Spare Parts and Slow-Moving Inventory

Inventories are stated at the lower between cost and net realizable value. The cost of finished goods and goods in process is comprised of raw materials, direct labor, utilities, freights and other direct costs and related production overhead costs, and it excludes borrowing costs. The allocation of fixed production costs, including depreciation and amortization charges, is based on the normal level of production capacity. Inventories cost is mainly based on the FIFO method. Tenaris estimates net realizable value of inventories by grouping, where applicable, similar or related items. Net realizable value is the estimated selling price in the ordinary course of business, less any estimated costs of completion and selling expenses. Goods in transit as of year-end are valued based on the supplier’s invoice cost.

Tenaris establishes an allowance for obsolete or slow-moving inventories related to finished goods, goods in process, supplies and spare parts. For slow moving or obsolete finished products, an allowance is established based on management’s analysis of product aging. An allowance for obsolete and slow-moving inventory of supplies and spare parts is established based on management's analysis of such items to be used as intended and the consideration of potential obsolescence due to technological changes, aging and consumption patterns.

Allowances for Doubtful Accounts

Trade and other receivables are recognized initially at fair value that corresponds to the amount of consideration that is unconditional unless they contain significant financing components. The Company holds trade receivables with the objective of collecting the contractual cash flows and therefore measures them subsequently at amortized cost using the effective interest method. Due to the short-term nature, their carrying amount is considered to be the same as their fair value.

Tenaris applies the IFRS 9 “Financial Instruments” simplified approach to measure expected credit losses, which uses a lifetime expected loss allowance for all trade receivables. To measure the expected credit losses, trade receivables have been grouped based on shared credit risk characteristics and the days past due. The expected loss rates are based on the payment profiles of sales over a period of three years and the corresponding historical credit losses experienced within this period. The expected loss allowance also reflects current and forward-looking information on macroeconomic factors affecting the ability of each customer to settle the receivables.


Deferred income tax

Deferred income tax is recognized applying the liability method on temporary differences arising between the tax basis of assets and liabilities and their carrying amounts in the consolidated financial statements. The principal temporary differences arise from the effect of currency translation on depreciable fixed assets and inventories, depreciation on property, plant and equipment, valuation of inventories, provisions for pension plans and fair value adjustments of assets acquired in business combinations. Deferred tax assets are also recognized for net operating loss carry-forwards. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are measured at the tax rates that are expected to apply in the time period when the asset is realized or the liability is settled, based on tax laws that have been enacted or substantively enacted at the reporting date.

Management periodically evaluates positions taken in tax returns with respect to situations in which applicable tax regulation is subject to interpretation and considers whether it is probable that a tax authority would accept an uncertain tax treatment. The Company measures its tax balances either based on the most likely amount or the expected value, depending on which method provides a better prediction of the resolution of the uncertainty.

Deferred tax assets are recognized to the extent that it is probable that future taxable income will be available against which the temporary differences can be utilized. At the end of each reporting period, Tenaris reassesses unrecognized deferred tax assets. Tenaris recognizes a previously unrecognized deferred tax asset to the extent that it has become probable that future taxable income will allow the deferred tax asset to be recovered.

Deferred tax liabilities and assets are not recognized for temporary differences between the carrying amount and tax basis of investments in foreign operations where the company is able to control the timing of the reversal of the temporary differences and it is probable that the differences will not reverse in the foreseeable future.

Deferred tax assets and liabilities are offset when there is a legally enforceable right to offset current tax assets and liabilities and when the deferred tax balances relate to the same taxation authority. Current tax assets and tax liabilities are offset where the entity has a legally enforceable right to offset and intends either to settle on a net basis, or to realize the asset and settle the liability simultaneously.

Deferred tax assets and liabilities are re-measured if tax rates change. These amounts are charged or credited to the Consolidated Income Statement or to the item Other comprehensive income for the year in the Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income, depending on the account to which the original amount was charged or credited.

Post-employment benefits

The Company estimates at each year-end the provision necessary to meet its post employment obligations in accordance with the advice from independent actuaries. The calculation of post employment and other employee obligations requires the application of various assumptions. The main assumptions for post employment and other employee obligations include discount rates, compensation growth rates, pension growth rates and life expectancy. Changes in the assumptions could give rise to adjustments in the results and liabilities recorded and might have an impact on the post employment and other employee obligations recognized in the future.

Contingencies

We are from time to time subject to various claims, lawsuits and other legal proceedings, including customer, employee, tax and environmental-related claims, in which third parties are seeking payment for alleged damages, reimbursement for losses, or indemnity. Management with the assistance of legal counsel periodically reviews the status of each significant matter and assesses potential financial exposure. Our potential liability with respect to such claims, lawsuits and other legal proceedings cannot be estimated with certainty.

Some of these claims, lawsuits and other legal proceedings involve highly complex issues, and often these issues are subject to substantial uncertainties and, therefore, the probability of loss and an estimation of damages are difficult to ascertain. Accordingly, with respect to a large portion of such claims, lawsuits and other legal proceedings, Tenaris is unable to make a reliable estimate of the expected financial effect that will result from ultimate resolution of the proceeding. In those cases, Tenaris has not accrued a provision for the potential outcome of these cases. If a potential loss from a claim, lawsuit or other proceeding is considered probable and the amount can be reasonably estimated, a provision is recorded. Accruals for loss contingencies reflect a reasonable estimate of the losses to be incurred based on information available to management as of the date of preparation of the consolidated financial statements and take into consideration litigation and settlement strategies. In a limited number of ongoing cases, Tenaris was able to make a reliable estimate of the expected loss or range of probable loss and has accrued a provision for such loss but believes that publication of this information on a case-by-case basis would seriously prejudice Tenaris’s position in the ongoing legal proceedings or in any related settlement discussions. Accordingly, in these cases, the Company has disclosed information with respect to the nature of the contingency but has not disclosed its estimate of the range of potential loss.


These estimates are primarily constructed with the assistance of legal counsel, and management believes that the aggregate provisions recorded for potential losses in the consolidated financial statements are adequate based upon currently available information. However, if management’s estimates prove incorrect, current reserves could be inadequate and we could incur a charge to earnings which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial condition, net worth and cash flows. As the scope of liabilities becomes better defined, there may be changes in the estimates of future costs which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial condition, net worth and cash flows.

A. Results of Operations

The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based on our audited consolidated financial statements included elsewhere in this annual report. Accordingly, this discussion and analysis present our financial condition and results of operations on a consolidated basis. See “Presentation of Certain Financial and Other Information - Accounting Principles” and II. Accounting Policies A. Basis of presentation” and B. Group accounting” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report. The following discussion should be read in conjunction with our audited consolidated financial statements and the related notes included in this annual report.

Thousands of U.S. dollars (except number of shares and per share amounts)

For the year ended December 31,

2020

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

Selected consolidated income statement data

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continuing operations

 

 

 

Net sales

  5,146,734

  7,294,055

  7,658,588

Cost of sales

  (4,087,317)

  (5,107,495)

  (5,279,300)

Gross profit

  1,059,417

  2,186,560

  2,379,288

Selling, general and administrative expenses

  (1,119,227)

  (1,365,974)

  (1,509,976)

Impairment charge (1)

  (622,402)

  -

  -

Other operating income (expenses), net

  19,141

  11,805

  2,501

Operating (loss) income

  (663,071)

  832,391

  871,813

Finance income

  18,387

  47,997

  39,856

Finance cost

  (27,014)

  (43,381)

  (36,942)

Other financial results

  (56,368)

  14,667

  34,386

(Loss) income before equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies and income tax

  (728,066)

  851,674

  909,113

Equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies

  108,799

  82,036

  193,994

(Loss) income before income tax

  (619,267)

  933,710

  1,103,107

Income tax

  (23,150)

  (202,452)

  (229,207)

(Loss) income for the year for continuing operations

  (642,417)

  731,258

  873,900

 

 

 

 

(Loss) income attributable to (2):

 

 

 

Owners of the parent

  (634,418)

  742,686

  876,063

Non-controlling interests

  (7,999)

  (11,428)

  (2,163)

(Loss) income for the year (2)

  (642,417)

  731,258

  873,900

 

 

 

 

Depreciation and amortization

  (678,806)

  (539,521)

  (664,357)

Weighted average number of shares outstanding

  1,180,536,830

  1,180,536,830

  1,180,536,830

Basic and diluted (losses) earnings per share

  (0.54)

  0.63

  0.74

Dividends per share (3)

  0.07

  0.41

  0.41


 

(1)   Impairment charge in 2020 represents a charge of $622 million to the carrying value of goodwill of the CGUs OCTG USA, IPSCO and Coiled Tubing in the amounts of $225 million, $357 million and $4 million respectively, and the carrying value of fixed assets of the CGU Rods USA in the amount of $36 million.

(2)   IAS 1 (revised), requires that income for the year as shown on the income statement does not exclude non-controlling interests. Earnings per share, however, continue to be calculated on the basis of income attributable solely to the owners of the parent.

(3)   Dividends per share correspond to the dividends proposed or paid in respect of the year.

 

Thousands of U.S. dollars (except number of shares)

At December 31,

2020

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

Selected consolidated financial position data

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Current assets

  4,287,672

  5,670,607

  5,464,192

Property, plant and equipment, net

  6,193,181

  6,090,017

  6,063,908

Other non-current assets

  3,235,336

  3,082,367

  2,723,199

Total assets

  13,716,189

  14,842,991

  14,251,299

 

 

 

 

Current liabilities

  1,166,475

  1,780,457

  1,718,363

Non-current borrowings

  315,739

  40,880

  29,187

Deferred tax liabilities

  254,801

  336,982

  379,039

Other non-current liabilities

  532,701

  498,300

  249,218

Total liabilities

  2,269,716

  2,656,619

  2,375,807

 

 

 

 

Capital and reserves attributable to the owners of the parent

  11,262,888

  11,988,958

  11,782,882

Non-controlling interests

  183,585

  197,414

  92,610

Total equity

  11,446,473

  12,186,372

  11,875,492

 

 

 

 

Total liabilities and equity

  13,716,189

  14,842,991

  14,251,299

 

 

 

 

Share capital

  1,180,537

  1,180,537

  1,180,537

Number of shares outstanding

  1,180,536,830

  1,180,536,830

  1,180,536,830

 

 


The following table sets forth our operating and other costs and expenses as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated.

Percentage of net sales

 For the year ended December 31,

 

2020

2019

2018

Continuing operations

 

 

 

Net sales

  100.0

  100.0

  100.0

Cost of sales

  (79.4)

  (70.0)

  (68.9)

Gross profit

  20.6

  30.0

  31.1

Selling, general and administrative expenses

  (21.7)

  (18.7)

  (19.7)

Impairment charge

  (12.1)

  -

  -

Other operating income (expenses), net

  0.4

  0.2

  0.0

Operating (loss) income

  (12.9)

  11.4

  11.4

Finance income

  0.4

  0.7

  0.5

Finance cost

  (0.5)

  (0.6)

  (0.5)

Other financial results

  (1.1)

  0.2

  0.4

(Loss) income before equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies and income tax

  (14.1)

  11.7

  11.9

Equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies

  2.1

  1.1

  2.5

(Loss) income before income tax

  (12.0)

  12.8

  14.4

Income tax

  (0.4)

  (2.8)

  (3.0)

(Loss) income for the year for continuing operations

  (12.5)

  10.0

  11.4

 

 

 

 

(Loss) income attributable to:

 

 

 

Owners of the parent

  (12.3)

  10.2

  11.4

Non-controlling interests

  (0.2)

  (0.2)

  (0.0)

 

Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2020, Compared to Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019

The following table shows our net sales by business segment for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

 For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2020

2019

Tubes

  4,844

94%

  6,870

94%

(29%)

Others

  303

6%

  424

6%

(29%)

Total

  5,147

100%

  7,294

100%

(29%)

 

Tubes

 

The following table indicates, for our Tubes business segment, sales volumes of seamless and welded pipes for the periods indicated below:

Thousands of tons

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2020

2019

Seamless

  1,918

  2,600

(26%)

Welded

  480

  671

(28%)

Total

  2,398

  3,271

(27%)

 


The following table indicates, for our Tubes business segment, net sales by geographic region, operating income and operating income as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2020

2019

Net sales

 

 

 

- North America

  2,108

  3,307

(36%)

- South America

  660

  1,240

(47%)

- Europe

  566

  641

(12%)

- Middle East & Africa

  1,194

  1,337

(11%)

- Asia Pacific

  315

  345

(9%)

Total net sales

  4,844

  6,870

(29%)

Operating (loss) income

  (616)

  755

(182%)

Operating (loss) income (% of sales)

(12.7%)

11.0%

 

Net sales of tubular products and services decreased 29% to $4,844 million in 2020, compared to $6,870 million in 2019, reflecting a 27% decline in volumes and a 4% decrease in average selling prices. In North America, we had lower volumes and prices across the region where activity was severely affected by the downturn in oil prices and the pandemic. In South America we also had lower volumes and prices across the region where activity was severely affected by the downturn in oil prices and the pandemic, except in Brazil where offshore drilling activity continued. In Europe, while sales of OCTG in the North Sea and line pipe for downstream processing remained stable, sales of mechanical and other products declined. In the Middle East & Africa, while sales in Saudi Arabia declined, they were compensated by higher OCTG sales in the rest of the Middle East. Line pipe for deepwater product in West Africa and downstream projects through the region declined. In Asia Pacific, our sales declined mainly driven by lower sales in Thailand.

Operating results from tubular products and services amounted to a loss of $616 million in 2020, compared to a gain of $755 million in 2019. In addition to the decline in sales following the drop in drilling activity, our results were negatively impacted by lower absorption of fixed costs and the inefficiencies related to the low level of capacity utilization since March 2020. Additionally, Tubes operating income was affected by $139 million of severance charges, by an impairment charge of $582 million, reflecting the difficult business conditions generated by COVID-19 pandemic, with the collapse in oil demand and prices and the impact on drilling activity and on the demand for steel pipe products and by $138 million higher depreciation and amortization charge mainly related to the incorporation of the IPSCO facilities and the accelerated depreciation of the Prudential facility after the decision to close it and consolidate our Canadian pipe manufacturing operations at our facility in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

Others

The following table indicates, for our Others business segment, net sales, operating income and operating income as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2020

2019

Net sales

  303

  424

(29%)

Operating (loss) income

  (47)

  77

(161%)

Operating (loss) income (% of sales)

(15.6%)

18.2%

 

 

Net sales of other products and services declined 29% from $424 million in 2019 to $303 million in 2020, mainly due to lower sales of energy related products, i.e., sucker rods and coiled tubing.

Operating results from other products and services amounted to a loss of $47 million in 2020, compared to a gain of $77 million in 2019. Others segment in 2020 includes impairment charges for $40 million, as well as charges for leaving indemnities amounting to $4 million. Additionally, results in 2020 were negatively impacted by lower absorption of fixed costs and the inefficiencies related to the low level of capacity utilization since March 2020.


Selling, general and administrative expenses or SG&A, amounted to $1,119 million (21.7% of net sales), compared to $1,366 million (18.7%) in 2019. SG&A during 2020 included $61 million of leaving indemnities. The $247 million reduction in SG&A was mainly due to lower freights and other selling expenses ($131 million) and fixed and other costs ($167 million), net of higher depreciation and amortization ($51 million) related mainly to the incorporation of IPSCO.

Financial results amounted to a loss of $65 million in 2020, compared to a gain of $19 million in 2019. The loss in 2020 corresponds to a net finance cost of $9 million, reflecting a lower net cash position1 and lower yields on the position and $55 million a foreign exchange loss net of derivative results, mainly due to a 9% EUR appreciation on EUR denominated intercompany liabilities at subsidiaries whose functional currency is the U.S. dollar and a 29% Brazilian Real depreciation on USD denominated intercompany liabilities at subsidiaries in Brazil whose functional currency is the Brazilian Real, both results are to a large extent offset by changes to our currency translation reserve.

Equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies generated a gain of $109 million in 2020, compared to $82 million in 2019. These results were mainly derived from our equity investment in Ternium, Techgen and Usiminas.

Income tax charge amounted to $23 million in 2020, compared to $202 million in 2019. The lower charge in 2020 is explained by deferred tax gains arising from losses since the COVID-19 outbreak around March 2020.

Net results for continuing operations amounted to a loss of $642 million in 2020, compared to a gain of $731 million in 2019. The lower results reflect a worse operating environment, include impairment and severance charges, worse financial results, partially compensated by a higher contribution from our non-consolidated investments, mainly Ternium and lower taxes.

Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019, Compared to Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2018

The following table shows our net sales by business segment for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

 For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2019

2018

Tubes

  6,870

94%

  7,233

94%

(5%)

Others

  424

6%

  426

6%

(0%)

Total

  7,294

100%

  7,659

100%

(5%)


Tubes

 

The following table indicates, for our Tubes business segment, sales volumes of seamless and welded pipes for the periods indicated below:

Thousands of tons

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2019

2018

Seamless

  2,600

  2,694

(3%)

Welded

  671

  877

(23%)

Total

  3,271

  3,571

(8%)

                                                       

1 Net cash position is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.


The following table indicates, for our Tubes business segment, net sales by geographic region, operating income and operating income as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2019

2018

Net sales

 

 

 

- North America

  3,307

  3,488

(5%)

- South America

  1,240

  1,284

(3%)

- Europe

  641

  628

2%

- Middle East & Africa

  1,337

  1,541

(13%)

- Asia Pacific

  345

  292

18%

Total net sales

  6,870

  7,233

(5%)

Operating income

  755

  777

(3%)

Operating income (% of sales)

11.0%

10.7%

 

 

Net sales of tubular products and services decreased 5% to $6,870 million in 2019, compared to $7,233 million in 2018, reflecting an 8% decline in volumes and a 4% increase in average selling prices. In North America, while sales were higher in Mexico, they declined in Canada and the United States reflecting lower drilling activity. In South America sales declined slightly reflecting a reduction in drilling activity in Argentina towards the end of the year. In Europe sales increased due to higher demand for offshore line pipe and OCTG with lower sales of mechanical pipes and line pipe for hydrocarbon process projects. In the Middle East & Africa, the acquisition of SSPC and an increase in sales in the Middle East outside of Saudi Arabia (where destocking took place) did not compensate for the drop in sales of offshore line pipe following the completion of deliveries for East Mediterranean gas development projects. In Asia Pacific, while sales increased in China, Indonesia and Australia, they declined in Thailand.

Operating income from tubular products and services, amounted to $755 million in 2019, compared to $777 million in 2018 (including a $109 million one-off charge from higher amortization of intangibles).

Operating income during 2019 was negatively affected by lower shipment volumes after the completion of deliveries of offshore line pipe for East Mediterranean gas development projects.

Others

The following table indicates, for our Others business segment, net sales, operating income and operating income as a percentage of net sales for the periods indicated below:

Millions of U.S. dollars

For the year ended December 31,

 Increase / (Decrease)

 

2019

2018

Net sales

  424

  426

(0%)

Operating income

  77

  95

(19%)

Operating income (% of sales)

18.2%

22.2%

 


Net sales of other products and services remained stable as lower sales of energy and excess raw materials and coiled tubing were compensated by higher sales of industrial equipment in Brazil and sucker rods.

Operating income from other products and services, decreased from $95 million in 2018 to $77 million in 2019, mainly due to the lower contribution from our sales of energy and excess raw materials and from our coiled tubing business.

Selling, general and administrative expenses or SG&A, decreased by $144 million in 2019 to $1,366 million in 2019, from $1,510 million in 2018 (in 2018 included a one-off higher amortization charge of $109 million). As a percentage of sales SG&A amounted to 18.7% in 2019 compared to 19.7% in 2018. Apart from the lower amortization and depreciation charge, SG&A declined mainly due to lower logistic costs and allowance for doubtful accounts partially compensated by higher services and fees, labor costs and taxes.


Financial results amounted to a gain of $19 million in 2019, compared to $37 million in 2018. The 2019 gain corresponds mainly to a foreign exchange gain of $28 million mainly related to the Argentine peso devaluation on peso denominated financial, trade, social and fiscal payables at Argentine subsidiaries which functional currency is the U.S. dollar.

Equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies generated a gain of $82 million in 2019, compared to $194 million in 2018. These results were mainly derived from our equity investment in Ternium.

Income tax charge amounted to $202 million in 2019 (24% over income before equity in earnings of non-consolidated companies and income tax), compared to $229 million in 2018 (25%).

Net income for continuing operations amounted to $731 million in 2019, compared to $874 million in 2018. The lower results reflect a worse operating environment and a reduction of $112 million in the contribution from our non-consolidated investments, mainly Ternium.

B. Liquidity and Capital Resources

The following table provides certain information related to our cash generation and changes in our cash and cash equivalents position for each of the last three years:

 

Millions of U.S. dollars

 For the year ended December 31,

 

2020

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

Net cash provided by operating activities

  1,520

  1,528

  611

Net cash (used in) provided by investing activities

  (2,092)

  (40)

  399

Net cash used in financing activities

  (375)

  (354)

  (900)

(Decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents

  (947)

  1,134

  109

 

 

 

 

Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of year (excluding overdrafts)

  1,554

  427

  330

Effect of exchange rate changes

  (22)

  (6)

  (13)

(Decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents

  (947)

  1,134

  109

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of year
(excluding overdrafts)

  585

  1,554

  427

 

 

 

 

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of year (excluding overdrafts)

  585

  1,554

  427

Bank overdrafts

  0

  0

  2

Other current investments

  872

  210

  488

Non-current investments

  239

  18

  114

Derivatives hedging borrowings and investments

  8

  19

  (6)

Current borrowings

  (303)

  (781)

  (510)

Non-current borrowings

  (316)

  (41)

  (29)

Net cash at the end of the year

  1,085

  980

  485

 

Our financing strategy aims to maintain adequate financial resources and access to additional liquidity. During 2020 cash flow provided by operating activities amounted to $1,520 million (including a decrease in working capital of $1,059 million), our capital expenditures amounted to $193 million and we paid dividends amounting to $83 million. At the end of the year we had a net cash position1 of $1,085 million, compared to $980 million at the beginning of the year.

                                                       

1 Net cash position is a non-IFRS alternative performance measure—please see Exhibit 7.2 for more information on this measure.


We believe that funds from operations, the availability of liquid financial assets and our access to external borrowing through the financial markets will be sufficient to satisfy our working capital needs, to finance our planned capital spending program and to service our debt in the future twelve months and to address short-term changes in business conditions. For more information see Item 5. “Operating and Financial Review and Prospects – Overview The COVID-19 pandemic and the oil & gas crisis and their impact on Tenaris’s operations and financial condition.”

We have a conservative approach to the management of our liquidity, which consists of (i) cash and cash equivalents (cash in banks, liquidity funds and investments with a maturity of less than three months at the date of purchase), and (ii) other investments (fixed income securities, time deposits, and fund investments).

At December 31, 2020, liquid financial assets as a whole (comprising cash and cash equivalents and other investments) were 12% of total assets compared to 12% at the end of 2019.

We hold investments primarily in liquidity funds and variable or fixed-rate securities from investment grade issuers. We hold our cash and cash equivalents primarily in U.S. dollars and in major financial centers. As of December 31, 2020, and December 31, 2019, U.S. dollar denominated liquid assets represented 95% of total liquid financial assets.

Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2020, Compared to Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019

Operating activities

Net cash provided by operations during 2020 was $1,520 million, compared to $1,528 million during 2019. This decrease was mainly attributable to a $1,059 million decrease in working capital in 2020, while in 2019 the decrease in working capital amounted to $523 million, offset by an impairment charge of $622 million in 2020. The annual variation in working capital was mainly attributed to a decrease of $829 million in inventories, compared to a decrease of $311 million in 2019. For more information on cash flow disclosures and changes to working capital, see note 28 “Cash flow disclosures” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

Investing activities

Net cash used in investing activities was $2,092 million in 2020, compared to a net cash used in investing activities of $40 million in 2019. We increased our financial investments by $887 million in 2020 compared to a reduction of $390 million in 2019. Additionally, during 2020 we spent $1,025 million in acquisition of subsidiaries.

Financing activities

Net cash used in financing activities, including dividends paid, proceeds and repayments of borrowings and acquisitions of non-controlling interests, was $375 million in 2020, compared to $354 million in 2019.

During 2020 we had net repayments from borrowings of $239 million, while in 2019 we had net proceeds from borrowings of $174 million.

Dividends paid during 2020 amounted to $83 million and during 2019 amounted to $484 million.

Our total liabilities to total assets ratio was 0.17:1 as of December 31, 2020 and 0.18:1 as of December 31, 2019.

Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019, Compared to Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2018

Operating activities

Net cash provided by operations during 2019 was $1,528 million, compared to $611 million during 2018. This increase was mainly attributable to a $523 million decrease in working capital in 2019, while in 2018 the increase in working capital amounted to $738 million. The annual variation was mainly attributed to a decrease of $428 million in trade receivables, compared to an increase of $518 million in 2018. Additionally, during 2019 inventories decreased $311 million which compares with an increase in inventory of $176 million in 2018. For more information on cash flow disclosures and changes to working capital, see note 28 “Cash flow disclosures” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.


Investing activities

Net cash used in investing activities was $40 million in 2019, compared to a net cash provided by investing activities of $399 million in 2018. We reduced our financial investments by $390 million in 2019 compared to a reduction of $717 million in 2018. Additionally, during 2019 we spent $133 million in acquisition of subsidiaries.

Financing activities

Net cash used in financing activities, including dividends paid, proceeds and repayments of borrowings and acquisitions of non-controlling interests, was $354 million in 2019, compared to $900 million in 2018.

During 2019 we had net proceeds from borrowings of $174 million, while in 2018 we had net repayments of borrowings of $413 million.

Dividends paid during 2019 and 2018 amounted to $484 million in each year.

Our total liabilities to total assets ratio was 0.18:1 as of December 31, 2019 and 0.17:1 as of December 31, 2018.

Principal Sources of Funding

During 2020, we funded our operations with operating cash flows, bank financing and available liquid financial assets. Short-term bank borrowings were used as needed throughout the year.

Financial liabilities

During 2020 borrowings decreased by $203 million to $619 million at December 31, 2020, from $822 million at December 31, 2019.

Borrowings consist mainly of bank loans. As of December 31, 2020, U.S. dollar-denominated borrowings plus borrowings denominated in other currencies swapped to the U.S. dollar represented 82% of total borrowings.

For further information about our financial debt, please see note 20 “Borrowings” to our audited consolidated financial statements included in this annual report.

The following table shows the composition of our financial debt at December 31, 2020, 2019 and 2018:

Millions of U.S. dollars

2020

2019

2018

 

 

 

 

Bank borrowings

  619

  822

  537

Bank overdrafts

  0

  0

  2

Total borrowings

  619

  822

  539

 

Our weighted average interest rates before tax (considering hedge accounting), amounted to 2.51% at December 31, 2020 and to 3.18% at December 31, 2019.

The maturity of our financial debt is as follows:

Millions of U.S. dollars

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At December 31, 2020

1 year or less

1 - 2 years

2 - 3 years

3 - 4 years

4 - 5 years

Over 5 years

Total

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Borrowings

  303

  104

  208