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Mittal vows to keep commitments on French plant

Published on Dec 7, 2012 9:43 PM

PARIS (AFP) - ArcelorMittal chief Lakshmi Mittal has vowed to keep his promise to maintain jobs at a French steel plant at the centre of a dispute with authorities, in a letter to workers seen by AFP on Friday.

"We will continue to produce steel of the highest quality in France, and we will work to show our stakeholders in France that we are a company that delivers on its commitments," the Indian-born tycoon said in the letter.

The French government and the steelmaker had been waging high-stakes brinkmanship for weeks over the fate of two blast furnaces at a plant in Florange in northeastern France that ArcelorMittal said were no longer viable.

Last Friday Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault reached an eleventh-hour deal in which ArcelorMittal would keep the 600 jobs and invest at least 180 million euros ($234 million) over five years at the plant. The fate of the furnaces was tied to a decision on an EU carbon capture project.

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