MOSCOW, Dec 12 (Reuters) - Severstal, Russia's second-largest steelmaker, reached agreement to acquire the remaining 38.5 percent stake in the Putu iron ore project from Afferro Mining Inc for an initial $65 million, plus a possible $50 million additional future payment.
Severstal, which already owns 61.5 percent of the Liberian project, will make the initial payment by the end of February.
"We are pleased to announce this transaction which will strengthen Severstal's position in the global iron ore market," Thomas Veraszto, senior vice president of strategy, said in a statement.
"The acquisition is in line with our key strategic goals of being a leading global steel and steel related mining company with high-quality iron ore and coal assets across the world."
Severstal is one of several Russian steel majors seeking to increase its iron ore mining operations in order to secure supplies and hedge against rising prices.
Number three producer Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works said last month it would acquire Australian iron miner Flinders for $538 million.
Severstal, controlled by billionaire Alexei Mordashov, could also pay an additional $50 million to an Afferro subsidiary after a definitive feasibility study of the mine is completed.
If Afferro does not demand the payment, it is eligible to receive future compensation.
Severstal said in July Putu has an estimated 3.2 billion tonnes of reserves, up from an earlier 2.4 billion tonne estimate.
Severstal also estimates total capital expenditures at between $2.5 billion and $3.5 billion, with production scheduled to begin in 2017 or 2018.