China's HeSteel officially takes over Serbian steel mill: PM

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The steel mill in the Serbian city of Smederevo is officially in ownership of Chinese HeSteel since Friday, and the 46-million-euro (51.6 million U.S. dollars) deal becomes a reality, Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic announced here on Friday.

Vucic opened a press conference at the government building, announcing the takeover of the steel plant. He stressed that this acquisition is of vital interests for Serbia and its citizens.

"I wish them luck and success. Money has been transferred to the account, all 46 million euros. I Congratulate them, and I wish them to increase production at the steel mill, strengthening Smederevo as an industrial city and advancing it into a more prosperous and successful place," he said.

The Smederevo steel mill, founded in 1913, experienced difficulties and was acquired by China's HeSteel Group (HBIS) in April this year.

The Chinese steel group plans to invest at least 300 million euros (337.6 million dollars) and turn it into one of the most competitive steel mills in Europe. The Chinese company employed all the 5,000 or so workers of the plant.

Vucic said that in the hands of HeSteel, the country's sole steel mill who has been in desperate need for a new owner, can now become the motor of the economy for the country, struggling to increase its growth and reduce economic deficit.

"I wish that they bring even faster development to our Serbia," Vucic concluded. Endit

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