ArcelorMittal to Buy U.S. Coal Mining Group

The acquisition fits with the company's strategy of buying mining groups to acquire its own supply of raw materials at a time of rapidly rising prices.

Arcelor Mittal, the world's biggest steel producer, said on June 23 it had agreed to buy U.S. coal mining group Mid Vol Coal for an undisclosed sum. Mid Vol, based in Virginia and West Virginia, produced 1.5 million tons of coking coal last year and has reserves of 85 million tons.

"This acquisition further increases our upstream self-sufficiency in a primary raw material," said finance director Aditya Mittal.

ArcelorMittal is the biggest buyer of Mid Vol's coking coal, used to produce coke, which is a key raw material required in the steel-making process.

The acquisition fits with the company's strategy of buying mining groups to acquire its own supply of raw materials at a time of rapidly rising prices. The company has recently bought stakes in South Africa's Coal of Africa, Australian mining group Macarthur Coal and has bought three mines in Russia.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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