SHANGHAI, China (AP) — ArcelorMittal, the world's biggest steel company, said Wednesday that it has agreed to buy a 28 percent stake in China Oriental Group, a steel products maker, for US$674 million (euro463 million).
The purchase of 820.1 million ordinary shares from Smart Triumph Corp. and Chen Ningning will make ArcelorMittal the second-largest shareholder in China Oriental, Arcelor said in a statement.
The acquisition follows Monday's approval by Arcelor SA's shareholders of a euro30 billion (US$41 billion) merger with Mittal Steel Co.
China Oriental's shares were suspended from trading Wednesday on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
The company makes steel billets, strips, cold-rolled and galvanized steel at factories in northern China's Hebei province and in the southern province of Guangdong.
ArcelorMittal has been expanding its investments in China, seeking to build its position in the world's biggest steel-making and consuming market.
Last month, the company announced it had bought 90 percent of Shandong-based Chinese steel wire company Rongcheng Chengshan Steelcord for US$26.6 million (euro18.8 million).
However, the company's bid for a 38 percent stake in mid-sized steelmaker Laiwu Steel Corp., also based in Shandong, has stalled, with Chinese regulators demanding a higher price to let the deal go through.