Nippon Steel

Antitrust decision on the deal is expected in mid-May

Japanese steelmaker Nippon Steel has applied to the European Commission for permission to acquire US Steel, Reuters reports.

The EC has set a preliminary deadline of May 17 for the antitrust decision. It will consider whether the deal is compatible with EU rules.

The process is classified as a simplified procedure. It is typically used when competition concerns are minimal or when the market share of the companies involved, individually or in aggregate, is small.

Nippon Steel has production bases in Sweden, Finland and the UK, as well as a representative office in Germany, while US Steel owns assets in Slovakia (US Steel Kosice).

According to Politico, the US Department of Justice has launched an in-depth review of the proposed takeover of US Steel. The deal is opposed by the United Steelworkers union, which claims that it jeopardizes jobs in the United States.

The Chairman of the US Senate Banking Committee Sherrod Brown called on the White House to scrutinize the relationship between Nippon Steel and the Chinese steel industry, citing national security concerns amid congressional opposition to the U.S. Steel deal.

At the same time, the United Steelworkers rejected a letter from the Japanese steelmaker with commitments on costs and job protection, calling it a «meaningless piece of paper.» The union said it received it on March 27 along with a draft agreement.

As GMK Center reported earlier, in March, Nippon Steel announced that it intended to complete the acquisition of US Steel despite the fact that US President Joe Biden expressed his wish to keep the latter in American ownership.