Questions looming over possible Oyak-British Steel deal – pro-gov’t newspaper

There are many unanswered questions regarding a possible deal for the purchase of British Steel by the Turkish Armed Forces Assistance Fund, Oyak, pro-government Sabah daily said in its Tuesday edition.

Oyak was chosen above several other bidders including British-based Liberty to purchase British Steel, after the company turned insolvent in May following the government’s refusal  to a £30m bailout request from former owner Greybull Capital.

Oyak’s subsidiary Ataer Holding is in talks with the U.K.’s Official Receiver, the UK’s Sky said last week.

Oyak has failed to disclose how much it would pay for the U.K. manufacturer, Sabah said, while explaining British Steel’s poor performance.

“What is the total cost of Oyak’s British Steel operation? Did Oyak promise an investment of £900 million to double production,” Sabah asked.

“Why is Oyak, which is not interested in purchasing a company in Turkey, pushed to an unknown adventure in Britain?” it added.

The intervention of Sabah is important, as it is controlled by the family of Turkey’s finance minister Berat Albayrak, who is President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s son-in-law, British daily The Telegraph said.

Dilek Güngör, a columnist with Sabah newspaper, said on Wednesday that she could not help but wonder whether in the future Oyak would announce that it had transferred the shares of Ataer Holding to a company it would establish in Great Britain.

Oyak also owns Turkey’s largest steelmaker Erdemir and its factory İsdemir.

“Can the control of Erdemir and Isdemir be seized by a British company?” Güngör asked.