FILE PHOTO: A poster showing Chinese President Xi Jinping is seen in front of the Xinyuan Steel plant in Anyang, Henan province, China, February 19, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo

March 29, 2022

BEIJING (Reuters) – A unit of privately-owned Chinese firm Liaoning Fangda Group has offered to buy an 80% stake in state-backed Anyang Iron & Steel Group, the listed arm of Anyang said in a filing to the Shanghai Stock Exchange.

Jiangxi Fangda Steel Group Co Ltd has submitted an application and deposit to the Henan Zhongyuan Property Rights Exchange, as part of its offer of at least 11 billion yuan ($1.73 billion) for the 80% stake, according to the Henan exchange and a statement by Anyang Iron and Steel Co Ltd.

Anyang Group, the top steelmaker in China’s central Henan province with annual steel capacity of 10 million tonnes, has been planning ownership reform after China called for further consolidation of its mammoth ferrous sector.

It signed a letter of intent with Jiangsu-based private steelmaker Shagang Group in May 2021, before the local government decided on a public listing of its 80% stake last November.

Jiangxi Fangda, which also owns Shanghai-listed Fangda Special Steel, has capacity to make around 20 million tonnes of steel products per year.

The result of the stake transfer in Anyang Group is pending further negotiation and could lead to changes in the listed Anyang Iron and Steel’s ownership, the filing said.

China had pledged to speed up mergers and acquisitions in the steel sector and expects its top 10 steel producers to account for 60% of the country’s total steel output, up from 37% in end-2020.

($1 = 6.3650 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Min Zhang and Dominique Patton; editing by Barbara Lewis)

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