Locals celebrate as GFG secures future

FINANCIAL BURDEN LIFTED: Whyalla Business and Tourism President Malcolm McLeod, left, and Whyalla Mayor Clare McLaughlin are excited by the positive news from GFG Alliance.

FINANCIAL BURDEN LIFTED: Whyalla Business and Tourism President Malcolm McLeod, left, and Whyalla Mayor Clare McLaughlin are excited by the positive news from GFG Alliance.

The news of a deal between GFG Alliance and Credit Suisse that secures the company's future has brought relief to the Whyalla community, which was on edge as GFG fought to finalise their refinancing.

The Whyalla City Council, Whyalla Business and Tourism and Giles MP Eddie Hughes all had to remain strong after Greensill, a major lender to GFG Chairman Sanjeev Gupta, collapsed into administration in May.

They have now been rewarded for holding on, as favourable market conditions and efficency intiatives have allowed Liberty Primary Steel Australia to bounce back and make record-breaking profits.

Whyalla Mayor Clare Mclaughlin said it was fantastic to have GFG secure much-needed refinancing.

"Whyalla has been right behind GFG and Mr Gupta throughout this entire period of speculation, as we were confident in the future of GFG's local operations," she said.

"We have reinforced that Whyalla will only continue to strengthen and is now perfectly poised to capitalise on the exciting opportunities ahead.

"This announcement should put an end to the ongoing negative speculation surrounding our city, allowing us to focus on the numerous new developments that will reshape our future.

"This includes the proposed green hydrogen projects, foreshore hotel and redevelopment of our entire foreshore precinct."

Whyalla Business and Tourism President Malcolm McLeod was hopeful that the news would stimulate the local economy, providing a confidence boost for businesses.

"Business has been pretty good in Whyalla recently anyway and this will just give the community the confidence it needs to build that house or open that business," he said.

"We know all the employees out there have been working hard for this result...they should all feel very proud of themselves."

Member for Giles Eddie Hughes said the news was a step in the right direction, but there needed to be more clarity around Mr Gupta's future investments in the steelworks.

"We have a long way to go, what the community would like to see is potentially a timeline when it comes to investment in the steelworks and the much-needed upgrade," he said.

"This is one step forward but there's a lot more to come before we're fully out of the woods ... there will be a degree of skepticisim until people see some of the major tangible investments take place."