Corus agrees inital terms of Polish steel buy

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The Independent Online

Corus, the Anglo-Dutch steelmaker which has shed thousands of jobs this year to combat the strength of sterling against the euro, appeared yesterday to have extended its reach in Eastern Europe with a partial takeover of Poland's largest state-owned steel mill.

Corus, the Anglo-Dutch steelmaker which has shed thousands of jobs this year to combat the strength of sterling against the euro, appeared yesterday to have extended its reach in Eastern Europe with a partial takeover of Poland's largest state-owned steel mill.

The company had agreed initial terms of a takeover of Huta Katowice's long-products division, Katowice head Miroslaw Wrobel was quoted as saying. Corus officials were not available to confirm the agreement, which is subject to approval by the Polish government.

Mr Wrobel said that Corus and Katowice would form a joint venture, into which the assets would be placed. The deal is also conditional upon Corus agreeing to meet investment targets in the plant.

The deal could lead to the first major disposal of a Polish steel unit to a foreign firm.

It follows several years of moves by the Warsaw government to secure private finance to boost the sector's performance.

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