Russia's Eurochem secures $750 mln loan from European, Russian banks

MOSCOW, Sept 4 Thu Sep 4, 2014 5:53am EDT

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MOSCOW, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Russian fertiliser maker Eurochem has signed a $750 million, eight-year credit facility with a syndicate of Russian and foreign banks to finance a potash project at one of the world's largest deposits.

A syndicate made up of Europe's Credit Agricole, HSBC and ING, and Russian counterparts, Rosbank and Sberbank, agreed the loan, which was in the pipeline before the crisis in Ukraine prompted many Western lenders to shun Russia's loan market.

Eurochem, Russia's third-largest fertiliser maker, said late on Wednesday the money would be used to develop its Usolskiy potash project in the Perm region in central Russia, which will have total annual capacity of 3.7 million tonnes once a second development phase is completed.

Western debt and equity markets have been largely closed for Russian companies after the United States and European Union imposed sanctions on Russian businessmen, companies and state-run banks over Moscow's support of an uprising by pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine.

Steelmaker Evraz, which along with Eurochem does not feature on any U.S. or EU sanction lists, signed a $425 million syndicated loan in August, but secured less than it had sought as U.S. banks stayed away from the syndicate. (Reporting by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Mark Potter)

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