Stolberg lead plant to reopen when sale to Nyrstar approved

Credit: Ecobat

German lead plant Stolberg, also known as Berzelius Stolberg, will reopen when its sale has been approved and when it is technically ready, its prospective owner Nyrstar said on Thursday.

The plant, in the west of Germany, was sold to commodities group Trafigura in July and will be operated and managed by Trafigura Group unit Nyrstar.

Stolberg has been undergoing repairs since major flood damage in July 2021. Trafigura had said in July the restoration programme was scheduled to be completed in the third quarter of 2022.

Asked by Reuters when the plant will reopen, Nyrstar said: “We plan to restart the facility when the plant is technically ready, when all necessary feedstock and support materials are available and when all closing conditions and receipt of regulatory approvals to transfer the assets have been obtained.”

The sale needs approval by the relevant competition authorities.

The plant was among several German industrial businesses damaged by massive flooding in the country’s west and south in summer 2021 and declared force majeure on its contracts.

The Stolberg smelter largely supplies European battery producers with lead. Stolberg produces 155,000 tonnes of lead and over 100 different specifications of lead alloys plus 130,000 tonnes of sulphuric acid.

London Metal Exchange lead was about $2,177 a tonne on Thursday, hovering around 2-month highs.

(By Pratima Desai and Michael Hogan; Editing by Jane Merriman)

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