Commonwealth must co-invest in Arrium at Whyalla: SA government

South Australian premier Jay Weatherill will meet Arrium management, administrator Mark Mentha, unions and suppliers at Whyalla today.

The SA government has announced an interest-free loan scheme for Arrium creditors, and is expected to soon detail a co-investment plan to upgrade the company’s steelworks.

Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis, who will visit the site with Weatherill and regional development minister Geoff Brock, has pleaded with the federal government to contribute to an upgrade of the factory in the budget.

“[Industry] Minister [Christopher ] Pyne has done exceptional work for South Australia in the last seven days,” he told the ABC, referring to the last week’s announcement that Australia’s new submarines would be built in SA.

“I do expect the Commonwealth Government to co-invest in Arrium with the State Government.

“A state of 1.6 million taxpayers cannot do this alone.”

Arrium owes roughly $4 billion and began a complicated administration last month, involving 94 entities.