By Helena Smolak and Pierre Bertrand
ArcelorMittal has sold its steel and mining operations in Kazakhstan, putting an end to months of negotiations and mounting pressure from the country’s government.
The Luxembourg-based steelmaker, in operation in the country since 1995, sold its ArcelorMittal Temirtau business to the Qazaqstan Investment Corp., a state-controlled direct investment fund.
The company said Friday that it has received $286 million for the assets and that the deal includes a further $700 million as repayment of outstanding intra-group debt.
The agreement brings to a close months of negotiations between the company and the Kazakh government, which were disclosed in late October after dozens of miners were killed in an incident at the company’s Kostenco coal mine.
The company had said in October that an agreement-in-principle had been reached for the sale of the company to the state.
The October incident, which claimed the lives of 46 people, was the latest to affect ArcelorMittal’s operations in the country. It prompted the government at the time to end its cooperation with the company, according to news reports.
A fire at the company’s…
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