ArcelorMittal's step not to influence Ostrava steelworks--experts |

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ArcelorMittal's step not to influence Ostrava steelworks--experts

ArcelorMittal's step not to influence Ostrava steelworks--experts

The fact that ArcelorMittal has withdrawn from the deal to buy Italian steelmaker Ilva will have no influence on the steelworks in Ostrava that were formerly owned by ArcelorMittal and operated under the name ArcelorMittal Ostrava (AMO), experts and analysts polled by CTK have said.

The plan to acquire Ilva, the largest steel producer in Europe, was the reason why ArcelorMittal had to sell the Ostrava-based steelworks along with other steel plants in Romania, North Macedonia, Italy, Luxembourg and Belgium in order to meet EU requirements.

AMO was bought by Liberty Steel. The acquisitio was completed in summer, with AMO changing its name to Liberty Ostrava.

ArcelorMittal said on Monday it was withdrawing from the planned purchase of Ilva because the Italian government had reneged on its promise to provide it with immunity from prosecution over heavy pollution caused by the firm's plant.

According to Steel Union head Daniel Urban, the Italian government failed to keep its promise given to ArcelorMittal. "No wonder that the company (ArcelorMittal) is withdrawing," he said.

"In my opinion, the announcement has no influence on the transaction by which the Ostrava-based steelworks were acquired from ArcelorMittal by Liberty," Urban said.

The entire steel industry in Europe is currently in a difficult situation, Finlord analyst Boris Tomciak said.

"The Ostrava-based steelworks has had to trim production this year. Steel prices are falling and Asian competition is growing stronger. ArcelorMittal's withdrawal from the acquisition of the Italian steelworks signalises that supranational steel giants no longer wish to be involved in riskier European projects. The expected yields do not cover costs," Tomciak said, adding that the announcement would not have a direct impact on the Ostrava-based steelworks.

It is possible that the Ostrava-based steelworks would have be sold to a new owner even if ArcelorMittal had not been forced to do so by the EU, Natland chief economist Petr Barton said.

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