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Mittal and Hollande in “Blackmail” Talks

French officials are hot tempered over decisions by multinational firms to close plants. After ArcelorMittal announced plans to close two furnaces in Florange, the French industry minister described the company as engaging in “lying” and “blackmail” and suggested the world’s biggest steel producer should leave France, report James Boxell and Hugh Carnegy for the Financial Times. The quarrel is over whether the company met commitments made during a hostile takeover in 2006 and could “deepen fears among international companies about a powerful strain of anti-business sentiment running through François Hollande’s Socialist government,” the article notes. CEO Lakshmi Mittal gave the French government a deadline for coming up with a buyer for part of the plant, insisting that demand for European steel is down. “[President] Hollande raised the prospect of a ‘factory act’ during his election campaign this year, which would force companies to seek buyers before closing profitable plants,” the article reports, adding that such an act may not be in line with the French constitution or EU laws.” The two sides have since settled. – YaleGlobal

Mittal and Hollande in “Blackmail” Talks

Demanding respect, like a compulsive host, French official denounces multinational firms, including ArchelorMittal, with plans to close plants even in part
James Boxell, Hugh Carnegy
The Financial Times, 30 November 2012
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Source:The Financial Times
Rights:© THE FINANCIAL TIMES LTD 2012