Jindals set to buy ailing Italian steelmaker Lucchini for €1

Italy's Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said on Sunday that a company controlled by India's Jindal family is close to finalising a deal to buy ailing Italian steelmaker Lucchini.

Italian media have said Lucchini could be sold for a symbolic €1.

Lucchini, formerly owned by Russia's Severstal, was declared insolvent in 2012 and placed under special administration after falling victim to plunging European demand for steel during the 2008 recession.

"Jindal should finalise. It's a matter of days," Renzi said in San Rossore, Tuscany, when asked about Piombino, Lucchini's main production site.

While Renzi did not specify whether he was referring to Jindal Steel and Power or JSW Steel, respectively owned by brothers Naveen and Sajjan Jindal, the Mint newspaper had in July reported that JSW Steel had offered to buy parts of Lucchini.

In April sources with direct knowledge of the matter had said Jindal Steel and Power and JSW Steel were in competing talks to buy parts of Lucchini.

On a visit to a Catholic scout centre, Renzi did not specify whether he was referring to Jindal Steel & Power or JSW Steel, respectively owned by brothers Naveen and Sajjan Jindal.

According to Reuters, a source close to JSW said that talks were progressing quickly. "Work is going on in full swing," the source said after Renzi's comment.

None of the parties concerned were prepared to make a media statement.