November 9, 2018 / 11:22 AM / 8 months ago

Sanjeev Gupta's Liberty gets financing for Dunkirk aluminium smelter

FILE PHOTO: Liberty Steel boss Sanjeev Gupta stands outside steel pressing mill in Dalzell after completing its purchase, Scotland, Britain April 8, 2016. REUTERS/Russell Cheyne/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - Industralist Sanjeev Gupta’s Liberty steel company has secured the financing for its acquisition of a Dunkirk aluminum smelter from Rio Tinto.

The Liberty company said on Friday that it had entered into a committed financing agreement with a syndicate of major international banks. It said the term loan, secured on standard financial terms, provided for five years of committed funds.

Liberty added that the financing allowed it complete the takeover of the site, which employs 560 staff, by end-November.

“Today’s announcement follows extensive talks over recent months aimed at securing French Government approvals, long-term power price contracts and robust measures to protect the business in the face of aluminium market turbulence arising in part from U.S. sanctions against Rusal and the closure of a major alumina refinery in Brazil,” Liberty said in a statement.

Rio Tinto and Liberty had announced in January a binding agreement on the sale of the Dunkirk site, Europe’s largest aluminium smelter, in a deal expected to be worth $500 million, subject to final adjustments.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Gus Trompiz

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