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Report: Usiminas seeks extension of standstill covering 4B reais loans

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Report: Usiminas seeks extension of standstill covering 4B reais loans

In a move to conserve cash, is asking several banks — Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Banco Bradesco SA andBrazil state-controlled lenders Banco do Brasil SA and BNDES — to extend between30 days and 60 days the standstill agreement covering 4 billion Brazilian reaisin loans, Reuters reported July 13, citing four sources.

"The initial 120-day period was a tentative one ... normally,a little more time is required to iron out issues such as guarantees anddocumentation," one of the sources said, noting that terms of thedefinitive contracts have yet to be negotiated.

In mid-June, the banks agreed to an extension of Usiminas maturitiesover the next 10 years with a grace period of three years on the principal. Therefinancing, which amounts to 75% of the company's debt, is subject to fullapproval of a capital injection led by controlling shareholders and

As early as February, Usiminas has been to be in talks to refinanceloans set to mature in two years. The Brazilian steelmaker has struggled withthe continuing dispute between Nippon Steel and Techint Group as well as risingsteel imports and the Brazilian recession.

In a separate report, Reuters wrote that willoff-load its interest in Usiminas, valued at 270 million reais comprises 14% ofUsiminas common shares and 20% of preferred stock, only after losses had beenminimized on the 4 billion reais investment.

The investment exit will happen within a timetable imposedby antitrust watchdog Cade, the report cited CSN's executives and lawyers assaying.

CSN executives also allege that there is collusion betweenNippon Steel and Techint that resulted in massive losses at Usiminas.

As of July 13, US$1was equivalent to 3.29 Brazilian reais.