Want to have a steel plant in India: ArcelorMittal tells SC
ArcelorMittal on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that it was ready to pay Rs 7,000 crore – a liability which one of its sister concerns is burdened with for having 29 per cent stakes in now beleaguered Uttam Galva and KSS Petron – as it wanted to have its presence in India’s steel sector and also live harmoniously with the banks. Telling the bench of Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman and Justice Indu Malhotra that it would pay Rs 7000 crore, ArcelorMittal said: “I don’t want to fight with Committee of Creditors. I find the (Essar Steel) plant worthy. I don’t have a steel plant in India, It is worth it.”
The Committee of Creditors comprises 16 lender banks that have financed the Essar Steel. However, senior lawyer Harish Salve, appearing for ArcelorMittal, said that the company is willing to pay Rs 7,000 crore dues if it emerged as the successful bidder, but not as a precondition to become eligible to bid. Telling the court to consider the bid of Rs 42,000 crore plus Rs 7,000 crore, Salve said: “If I am not the highest bidder, I go home. If you apply law, apply the law and see where we end up.”
He said that Rs 7,000 crore, was already lying in its escrow account. Salve said this as the court asked him if they could jack up their offer noting that if they clear their liabilities then they are at par with the NuMetal.
Meanwhile, NuMetal too has moved the court challenging three days time given by NCLAT to ArcelorMittal to deposit Rs 7000 crore to become eligible to bid.