Bulgarian regulator clears ArcelorMittal to buy Severstal coal mines

Bulgarian regulator clears ArcelorMittal to buy Severstal coal mines

Bulgaria’s regulatory authorities have cleared ArcelorMittal subsidiary Mittal Steel Holdings AG to buy a number of Russia-based coal mining assets from Severstal (RTS: CHMF), the regulator said in a statement.

ArcelorMittal said on January 31 that it was buying a number of coal mining assets in Russia, some of them from Severstal, for a total of $720 million.

ArcelorMittal said it would buy 97.59% of the Berezovskaya mine and 99.35% of the Pervomaiskaya mine, both of which produce coking coal in the Kemerovo region.

The company also said it would buy Severstal’s Severnaya coal enrichment plant, which is attached to the Berezovskaya mine; controlling stakes in three ancillary transport, maintenance, repair and energy supply enterprises; and the rights to the Zhernovskaya-3 coal field.

The Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) has already cleared Mittal Steel Holdings AG to acquire 100% of the voting shares the coal mining assets.

Severstal itself said it was selling these assets for $650 million.

In addition, ArcelorMittal said it was buying 100% of the Anzherskaya mine from an unspecified seller. One of the parties to the transaction told Interfax that this mine was owned by a company affiliated to but not owned by Severstal.
These will be ArcelorMittal’s first Russian coking coal acquisitions. The company planned to bid at an auction for the Yakutia- based coal producers Yakutugol and Elgaugol in October 2007. An ArcelorMittal bidding entity was not admitted to that auction, which the Mechel (RTS: MTLR) won. The FAS only needed the statutory month to grant permission for ArcelorMittal’s proposed acquisitions from Severstal.

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