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Stevedoring company seeks indemnity in Arcelor dispute

Keywords: Tags  ArcelorMittal, Shippers Stevedoring, Western Bulk, ArcelorMittal International America, ArcelorMittal Tubular Products Roman, ArcelorMittal Tubular Products Iasi, Thorsten Schier

NEW YORK — A Texas stevedoring company is seeking a federal court judgment that would indemnify it from paying damages in a dispute between shipping company Western Bulk AS and subsidiaries of ArcelorMittal SA.

A Western Bulk ship was offloading pipe from Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal’s Romanian subsidiaries—ArcelorMittal Tubular Products Roman SA and ArcelorMittal Tubular Products Iasi SA—at the Port of Houston in January 2009 when a crane on the ship was damaged and had to be replaced, according to a filing in U.S. District Court in Texas. Oslo, Norway-based Western Bulk has sought reimbursement of $2.29 million in damages from ArcelorMittal’s subsidiaries in a London arbitration proceeding, according to the court filing.

ArcelorMittal claims that Houston-based Shippers Stevedoring Co., the stevedoring company hired to offload the shipment, caused the damage, according to a letter attached to the court filing. Shippers Stevedoring denies the claim.

Chicago-based ArcelorMittal International America LLC also was named in Shippers Stevedoring’s filing.

Attorneys for Shippers Stevedoring and ArcelorMittal’s subsidiaries and a spokeswoman for Chicago-based ArcelorMittal USA Inc. did not return requests for comment.

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