Norsk Hydro CEO eyes Brazil plant restart in "weeks or months"
Norwegian aluminium-maker Norsk Hydro aims to resume full production at its Alunorte alumina plant in Brazil within weeks or months, although the process still remains uncertain, Chief Executive Svein Richard Brandtzaeg told Reuters.
The plant, which processes the raw material used for aluminium production, is operating at half capacity after early last year admitting it had made unlicensed emissions of untreated water.
"We are talking about weeks or months before we go back to full operations," Brandtzaeg told Reuters on the sidelines of an industry conference, adding that the recent election campaign in Brazil had delayed the process.
"Things are falling into place … and the decision process will be somewhat faster"
Now that a new president is in place, as well as a governor for the state of Para where the plant is located, "things are falling into place … and the decision process will be somewhat faster," the CEO said.
Despite the progress, there was still a lot of uncertainty, he said.
Alunorte is the world's largest alumina refinery, with output large enough to sustain annual aluminium production of more than 3 million tonnes.
(Reporting by Gwladys Fouche; Editing by Terje Solsvik)