ArcelorMittal expects an Indian Supreme Court order in November on its proposed acquisition of Essar Steel (ESIL). Assuming a favourable and clear final order, the transaction closing is expected by year-end, the world’s largest steelmaker says in a report monitored by Kallanish.
In July India’s Supreme Court ordered a halt to the sale of Essar Steel to ArcelorMittal after lenders to the bankrupt steelmaker challenged an earlier appeal court ruling. The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT)’s earlier ruling approved the sale but said Essar’s operational creditors have to be treated on a par with financial creditors when splitting the proceeds. Hearings were subsequently held and the Supreme Court case was concluded towards the end of October.
ArcelorMittal plans to operate Essar Steel in partnership with Nippon Steel. Various legal challenges have prevented the completion of the acquisition since Essar’s creditor committee initially approved ArcelorMittal’s resolution plan in October 2018.
ArcelorMittal and Nippon have said they intend to increase Essar’s finished steel shipments to 8.5 million tonnes/year over the medium term. Over the longer term the aim is to increase finished steel sales to 12m-15m t/y through the addition of new iron and steelmaking assets.
ESIL currently produces 6.5m t/y of crude steel in western India and also has 14m t/y of iron ore pelletising capacity in eastern India.