Economy & Politics

Liberty Steel Dudelange under state infusion

In the midst of a storm due to the bankruptcy of the main financier of their parent company, the Luxembourg site is operating slowly and a majority of staff find themselves on short-time work, the unions indicate.

Jean-Michel HENNEBERT

Jean-Michel HENNEBERT

In the midst of a storm due to the bankruptcy of the main financier of their parent company, the Luxembourg site is operating slowly and a majority of staff find themselves on short-time work, the unions indicate.

Presented by the Minister of the Economy as “serious and tense”, the situation within the Luxembourg factory of Liberty Steel is reflected in the massive recourse to short-time work, according to the OGBL and the LCGB. Contacted Monday by our colleagues from LuxTimes, the unions estimate that the factory operates “between 25 and a maximum of 50%” of its capacity and that “three quarters of the employees are currently on partial unemployment”.


Liberty Steel

Franz Fayot returned on Tuesday to the chamber of the Chamber on the situation of the galvanizing plant a few days after having detailed behind closed doors the situation to the members of the Economy committee. With undisguised concern for the 220 or so employees of the site.


A situation which results from the commitments made by the government “not to drop the Dudelange site”, but which cannot go on forever. Because unlike the Liege site, which works in tandem with the Luxembourg site, no procedure for temporary protection against creditors could be initiated. So that, for the time being, the survival of the factory depends only on the infusion set up by the State.

“In Belgium, the United Kingdom and France, such systems exist in order to give companies the opportunity to restructure and find short-term solutions”, emphasizes Stefano Araujo, OGBL central secretary to our colleagues, specifying that “in Luxembourg, the situation is binary” since “if you do not inject funds into the company, it’s over”. Asked Tuesday, the Ministry of the Economy did not wish to detail this situation described as “very complex, every day a little more”.


By acquiring 7 steel plants this summer, Liberty Steel has become the 10th largest steel producer in the world.

The Luxembourg galvanizing plant will perhaps serve as a bargaining chip in an attempt to pay off part of the debts of the GFG Alliance group which had bought it in 2019.


For now, several hypotheses are circulating as to the future of the site, oscillating between the arrival of an angel buyer and nationalization. Whether the latter is total or partial. Paths on which the National Credit and Investment Company is looking, which has been commissioned to study the feasibility of different scenarios. As a reminder, this situation results from the bankruptcy of Greensill Personal-Financial.com, the main financial backer of the conglomerate GFC-Alliance, owner of Liberty Steel. An international domino game that will have consequences not only in Luxembourg, but on the whole planet since GFC-Alliance has a total of 40 sites spread over several continents, including twelve in Europe.


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