Aurubis plant in Italy closed as coronavirus shutters economy

Credit: Aurubis AG

Europe’s biggest copper smelter Aurubis said its operations in Italy had been closed for a week and that it planned to reopen next week.

The closure came after a government directive to temporarily shutter all non-essential businesses, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.

“Depending on the restart next week, the closure was about 10 days,” said company spokeswoman Angela Seidler, adding that the company was able to fulfil all its delivery obligations.

Italy, which has reported more deaths from the virus than any other country, introduced swingeing restrictions on movement and banned all non-essential activities until at least next Friday.

Aurubis’ Avellino plant, which is based in southern Italy near Naples, was ordered to close but received government permission to restart operations on Monday, the sources said.

The Avellino plant produces wire rod from copper cathode and employs about 100 people.

However, Aurubis’s main operations including in Hamburg, Pirdop, Olen and Lunen have been unaffected by the coronavirus pandemic and are functioning normally, the sources said.

(By Zandi Shabalala; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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