Italian government allocates Ilva investment funds

The Italian government has allocated €470 million ($553m) to becoming a shareholder in troubled ArcelorMittal Italia, formerly Ilva, through its investment body Invitalia.

The state is carrying out due diligence to determine the true value of the steelmaker, after which it will decide whether it becomes Ilva’s majority shareholder, Kallanish learns from sources close to the matter.

ArcelorMittal has a withdrawal right by 30 November, subject to the payment of €500m. However, in a televised interview, ArcelorMittal Italia’s chief executive, Lucia Morselli, reiterated ArcelorMittal’s commitment to its Italian investment. ArcelorMittal is respecting the roadmap for the environmental plan, and by 2023 it will have invested €1.2 billion, she said (see Kallanish passim).

ArcelorMittal has asked authorities for a grant of €200m and a loan of €600m that it will pay back in two years following the finalisation of the sale, Kallanish notes.

Meanwhile, the Taranto steelmaking facility is working at minimum levels as the majority of the workforce is temporarily laid off due to the Covid-19-induced steel demand drop.

ArcelorMittal is now implementing a two-week shutdown from 3 to 16 August. In Taranto the hot end area will keep running but the plate mill, pickling line, and galvanizing lines no. 2 and 3 will be idled for maintenance. The facility in Novi Ligure will also shut down from 3 to 16 August. In Genova galvanizing line no. 5 will also stop production for two weeks.