EUROFER: “A Blow in favour of fair Competition”
BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto give up plans for joint venture / Victory for the Global Steel Industry
“Today’s announcement by BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto to give up their plans for a joint venture or their iron ore assets in Western Australia is a victory for competition in the international raw materials market”, commented EUROFER director general Gordon Moffat.
EUROFER fought successfully already in 2007 and 2008 the previously proposed merger between the two mining giants and now sees confirmation of its view that the joint venture (JV) would materially not be much different from the original proposal of a full merger.
The signals from the German authorities, the European Commission, the Australian, Japanese and South Korean authorities to prohibit the JV demonstrate clearly that they share our view that the degree of concentration in the seaborne iron ore market is already very high.
“We very much welcome in particular the efforts made by the European Commission and German cartel authorities who have once again demonstrated their competence and authority in competition questions”, Moffat said.
Represented by EUROFER, the European steel industry is a world leader in its sector with a turnover of EUR 190 billion and direct employment of 420 thousand highly skilled people, producing 200 million tonnes of steel per year. More than 500 steel production and processing sites in 23 EU member states provide direct and indirect employment and a living for millions of European citizens.