STUTTGART, Germany, Nov 14 (Reuters) - German steel and engineering group ThyssenKrupp said late on Thursday talks with Adam Opel AG about buying the carmaker's parts business were proving more difficult than expected.
"We have a few stumbling blocks which we simply can't get away from. The talks are in a difficult phase," Juergen Harnisch, the head of Thyssen's automotive division, told reporters in comments embargoed until Friday.
Opel, the lossmaking German unit of the world's biggest carmaker, has been seeking a partner for its components business based in Kaiserslautern in southwestern Germany, Bochum in the industrial Ruhr district and Zaragoza in northeastern Spain, as part of a restructuring plan.
Harnish said there were differences over the value of the plants in Kaiserslautern.
He also said Thyssen was close to reaching a decision on taking over Finnish contract carmaker Valmet Automotive, in which it has a 10 percent stake and an option to buy the remaining 90 percent from engineering group Metso .
"We're on the home straight," he said.
Thyssen is in the middle of a massive revamp which will see it spin off around 33 units with combined sales of seven billion euros over the next few years while at the same time expanding its steel and capital goods divisions -- including the automotive business.