May 2, 2013 / 7:37 AM / in 5 years

Austria's RHI settles last U.S. asbestos claims

VIENNA, May 2 (Reuters) - Austrian fireproof materials maker RHI said it had settled the last of the asbestos claims it was facing in the United States 11 years after deconsolidating its U.S. business.

RHI said late on Wednesday it would receive a payment of $40 million from the former owner of one of its U.S. companies, after a U.S. district court confirmed a settlement with all the insurance companies concerned.

The Austrian company divested all its U.S. companies in 2001 due to soaring asbestos claims against its U.S. refractory companies that included Narco and the GIT group with Harbison-Walker and A.P. Green.

The claims, risk provisions and restructuring costs pushed the company into a loss of 856 million euros ($1.13 billion) in 2001 from a profit of 31 million a year earlier.

RHI said it had now completed the Chapter 11 proceedings of the deconsolidated companies. ($1 = 0.7580 euros) (Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by David Cowell)

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