The acquired assets include seven thermal coal-producing mines in the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan, a 50% stake in a carbon plant and a char production facility.

Westmoreland CEO Keith E. Alessi said, "We are pleased that the long process of closing this transaction is now complete.

"Over the past several months, we have met with employees, union representatives, customers and joint venture partners of the newly-acquired business."

Sherritt said that it will use significant portion of the cash proceeds to strengthen its balance sheet through debt reduction.

The company started debt-reduction discussions with advisors and debt holders, and plans to use proceeds that are not used for debt reduction for general corporate purposes.

Sherritt CEO David Pathe said this transaction benefits Sherritt by rationalising the company’s asset base, significantly enhancing liquidity and providing the opportunity to strengthen its balance sheet.

"We are continuing to execute on our strategy to build positive momentum and create sustainable shareholder value," Pathe added.