Brazilian steelmaker Companhia Siderúrgica Nacional (CSN) has confirmed that it is in advanced negotiations over the divestment of its assets in Europe. This could well be concluded in a relatively short period of time, says the company`s president of the board of directors Benjamin Steinbruch during the financial second-quarter report conference with analysts monitored by Kallanish.

The company is looking for buyers for its Portugal flat steel producer Lusosider and the German long steel manufacturer Stahlwerk Thüringen (SWT) (see Kallanish passim).



The executive said that the sale of the company`s assets abroad is currently being helped by the exchange rate and the current positive momentum of operations in Portugal and Germany. Good steel demand in Europe is also helping. This follows the sale of CSN subsidiary Heartland to US steel producer Steel Dynamics for $400 million in May.

“We have strong performance at Lusosider supported by a growing Spanish economy and the recovery of demand in that country, being the main market of the Portuguese unit. In Germany we have also strong performance and margins," says Steinbruch adding that CSN has already hired a bank to advise it in the sale of the assets.

Meanwhile, the company has concluded the extension of its debt repayment period with creditors. CSN extended the repayment period with Caixa Económica Federal (CEF) to 38 months from the current 26 months until 2023. This includes a reduction of BRL 7.5 billion ($1.98 billion) in maturities between 2018 and 2020. In February, the steelmaker completed negotiations with its other main creditor, Banco do Brasil (BB) delaying the repayment period to 2024.  The steelmaker`s debt with BB and CEF is equivalent to 49% of its consolidated debt, or BRL15.4 billion.

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