May 10, 2017 / 7:10 AM / 3 months ago

Austria's Voestalpine says Texas plant cost more than $1 bln

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VIENNA, May 10 (Reuters) - Steelmaker Voestalpine said on Wednesday the final cost of its direct reduction plant in the United States amounted to $1.012 billion (929 million euros), more than the $990 million estimated at the beginning of the year.

The Austrian group in 2013 announced plans to invest 550 million euros in the state-of-the-art plant in Corpus Christi, Texas, its largest foreign investment so far.

In January, it said the cost of the plant would rise to about $990 million. That prompted Austria's Financial Market Authority (FMA) to investigate whether Voestalpine had complied with a requirement to immediately publish information relevant to its share price. The FMA found no wrongdoing.

"The increase in investment expenditure is essentially due to delays caused by a longer period of critical weather conditions during the first phase of the project, significant cost inflation as a result of the unforeseen construction boom in the Corpus Christi area starting 2014, as well as additional investments, technical optimization, and environmental measures," the company said in a statement. (1 euro = $1.0888) (Reporting by Kirsti Knolle; editing by Francois Murphy)

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