ArcelorMittal sells its coal mines to Russia's National Fuel Company

ArcelorMittal sells its coal mines to Russia's National Fuel Company

ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT), the world's biggest steelmaker by shipments, announced Monday the sale of its interest in the Kuzbass coal mines in the Kemerovo region of Siberia, Russia, to Russia’s National Fuel Company (NTK).

The assets include the coal mines of Berezovskaya and Pervomaskaya, which together produce 700,000 tonnes of coal a year.

The Luxembourg-based company acquired the Kuzbass mines in 2008 as part of its strategy to secure delivery of coal to ArcelorMittal steel operations in Ukraine.

Bill Scotting, CEO of ArcelorMittal Mining, said that the decision to unload the Kuzbass coal mines followed a strategic review of the assets.

"As our Ukraine steel operations now source coking coal from ArcelorMittal’s mines in Kazakhstan, Kuzbass is no longer a strategic asset for ArcelorMittal," he added in the statement. "We are pleased to have agreed the sale to NTK as Kuzbass is an important employer in the region and this offers a sustainable solution for employees and other stakeholders.”

In the past two years ArcelorMittal, with presence in Europe, Asia, Africa, South and North America, has downsized its operations to adapt to changing demand and could be poised for higher profitability if growth in crucial markets like Europe and the United States continues.

ArcelorMittal’s steel has been used in famous landmarks around the world, including the new One World Trade Center in New York City, the Grand National Theatre of China in Beijing, the new Reichstag in Berlin and the world’s first-ever zero-emission polar research station, Princess Elisabeth Antarctica.

International sports venues have also been built with ArcelorMittal steel, from Johannesburg’s Soccer City to the Cape Town Stadium, both used for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, to the Wembley Stadium in London.