The government could not find a solution to the old Ilva problem

Black smoke in the old Ilva case. Today, January 8, an agreement for a capital increase was expected between the two partners, the Italian State and the French-Indian multinational company ArcelorMittal, which is the majority shareholder of the Taranto steel mill Acciaierie d’Italia, better known as the former Ilva. But this was not the case. At the meeting held with ArcelorMittal regarding the former Ilva in Taranto, “The government delegation proposed to the company’s senior management to commit to a capital increase equal to 320 million euros in order to contribute to increasing the company’s capital to 66 percent.” public shareholder Invitalia, with what is necessary to guarantee continuity of production”, reads a note from Palazzo Chigi. The government delegation consisting of Ministers of Economy Giancarlo Giorgetti, Raffaele Fitto of EU Affairs, Enterprise and Made in Italy Adolfo Urso and Minister of Labor Elvira Calderone. He made a proposal to the top management of the company (CEO Aditya Mittal was present) that the capital increase should be largely committed to the state, in which both partners should participate.

The difficulties of old Ilva

However, the offer was not accepted by the multinational company. The Government was therefore forced to take into account that ArcelorMittal could not undertake financial and investment commitments even if it was a minority shareholder, and “instructed Invitalia to take the necessary decisions through its legal team”. 68 percent of the old Ilva is owned by ArcelorMittal, and the remaining 32 percent is owned by the state through the company Invitalia, which deals with state investments.

The future of the largest Italian steel group, which has been seeking liquidity for months, therefore risks becoming uncertain again: the company no longer had the resources to pay its debts, continue production and carry out the necessary maintenance. Most of its facilities gradually came to a halt. To restore production and guarantee the jobs of employees, capital is needed, which, according to the Italian state, the Indian company ArcelorMittal is not willing to invest. The French-Indian multinational company bought the steel mill at auction in 2018, taking on the difficult task of reviving a company that had already suffered major losses due to years of investigations over environmental damage. The recovery never materialized, and two years after the old Ilva was transferred to ArcelorMittal in 2020, the Italian government therefore decided to pursue its ownership. This brings us to today, where there is black smoke at the table between the government and the French-Indian multinational.

Unions are worried about business continuity. Trade union organizations will meet at Palazzo Chigi on Thursday, January 11, in the afternoon. The outcome of today’s meeting, held at Palazzo Chigi on behalf of Fim, Fiom and Uilm, confirms “the need for public control and the lack of will of the private partner to want to invest resources in the future of the old Ilva”.

Source: Today IT

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