European Commission approves Nippon-US Steel acquisition

The European Commission has approved the acquisition of US Steel by Nippon Steel Corporation, it says in a note seen by Kallanish.

The Commission concluded the transaction would not raise competition concerns, given the companies’ limited market positions resulting from the proposed transaction. The notified transaction was examined under the simplified merger review procedure.

US Steel owns the 4.5 million tonnes/year crude steel capacity blast furnace-based steelworks in Kosice, which has been touted to transition to electric arc furnace steelmaking. Although the investment has received Slovakian government backing, the plant’s new owner will also need to provide capital for the project’s financing requirement to be covered.

In the US, the Nippon acquisition has hit a political stumbling block, with President Joe Biden and the US Steel union both opposing the deal.

The Japanese steelmaker said last week the transaction will be delayed to the third or fourth quarter. Nippon and US Steel have each received a request for additional information and documentary materials from the US Department of Justice in connection with the DOJ’s review of the proposed acquisition.

Adam Smith Poland