Italy calls for new ILVA investments, upgrade aid not enough

Taranto plant at centre of pollution row

Italy calls for new ILVA investments, upgrade aid not enough

(ANSA) - Taranto, August 21 - An Italian government official said the 146 million euros of subsidies earmarked to help ILVA carrying out obligatory upgrades will not suffice, adding the southern Italian steelmaker will need to carry out all required investments to ensure it is permitted to continue operating. "The necessary upgrades that would eliminate the dangers posed to the environment by the machinery in large part anyhow coincide with the required modernization of production technology," said environmental minister Corrado Clini. The Italian government and ILVA have been embroiled in a fierce legal standoff since a local court that has ordered the partial closure of the plant for environmental and health violations over a number of years. A Court of Review Monday said ongoing operations over the years at ILVA's Taranto steelworks had resulted in severe pollution, confirming the decision made earlier in the month to close down the plant whilst the necessary upgrades are carried out. The company has criticised the legal decision, saying the closure would put the livelihood of the 12,000 people it employs, as well as the jobs of many other people in the related supply chain, at risk.

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