ArcelorMittal rumored to be offering €1 billion to exit Ilva deal

Monday, 09 December 2019 17:43:19 (GMT+3)   |   Brescia

According to reports in several Italian newspapers, global steel giant ArcelorMittal has proposed to the Italian government the definitive resolution of its relations with the Taranto-based steel plant Ilva by offering to pay €1 billion in order to exit the plant and leave it in the hands of extraordinary administration by April 2020. The government, on the other hand, has sought an additional €850 million, resulting from the failed maintenance works (€350 million) and compensation for the early termination of the takeover contract (€500 million).

However, late on Sunday, December 8, Italy’s Ministry of Economic Development denied the arrival of a letter from the international steel giant, also stressing that "with the company there has never even been talk of an economic transaction for its exit from the plant."

Local trade unions have urgently asked the Italian prime minister and the Ministry of Economic Development to clarify the situation.

Meanwhile, other Italian media sources have reported that the Italian state may acquire an 18 percent stake in Ilva through its investment agency Invitalia or Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, in an attempt to convince ArcelorMittal not to leave the plant. The government may also restore legal immunity for ArcelorMittal over environmental issues. The withdrawal of such a shield was one of the reasons ArcelorMittal announced its intention in early November to pull out of the Ilva purchase agreement. The Italian government also wants to reduce the number of lay-offs at the plant as much as possible. Last week, ArcelorMittal presented a new plan envisaging 2,900 layoffs as early as 2020 and 1,800 layoffs in 2023, for a total of 4,700 redundancies.

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