Any merger between the two industry competitors would largely involve Tata’s UK arm, which has been troubled for some time.
Tata’s British factories make up for 11,000 of its staff, and this possible merger offers them tentative hope in a time when the company has lost millions. Its future has been uncertain since it was put up for sale in March, but talks with the German conglomerate do not necessarily offer any respite, especially since job cuts would still be extremely likely.
The UK government had been accused of complacency in the build-up to the steel crisis, but since this announcement, it has offered incentives to keep Tata afloat.
Ministers are now willing to take a share of up to 25 percent and are offering millions of pounds in loans to save the business, as well as a promise to change certain steel laws if necessary.
While Tata has attracted offers from buyers in the past, it left itself dangling by failing to confirm its status. ThyssenKrupp had not previously shown any interest in Tata’s British operations, but it was a spokesperson from the company that confirmed the news of its most recent talks.