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Hargreaves abandons UK Coal merger plans

Negotiations between Hargreaves and UK Coal have been called off.

14 June 2010

Hargreaves Services has broken off negotiations with UK Coal after dropping its merger plans.

Earlier this year, the north-east based company outlined its intentions to push ahead with negotiations with the country's biggest coal mining firm.

However, while acknowledging that UK Coal possesses a number of attractive propositions, including its three active deep mines in the Midlands, it has now confirmed that it will not be moving forwards with its merger plans.

"While recognising that UK Coal has many valuable assets, (Hargreaves) does not intend to pursue such a merge," a statement issued by the company read.

According to the Yorkshire Post, the merger plans were dropped partly as a result of the "scale and complexity" of the proposed deal, in addition to concerns relating to the size of the UK coal pension scheme deficit.

At the end of last month, UK Coal confirmed that it has entered guilty pleas in respect to seven charges of breaching health and safety regulations, with three employees set to go on trial at Leeds Crown Court next year.

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