Rio Tinto unit still in talks on energy supply for NZ smelter

Apr 03, 2013 | 11:08 AM | Shivani Singh

Tags  Rio Tinto, Pacific Aluminium, electricity, deal, government, New Zealand, NZAS, New Zealand Aluminium Smelters John Key

SINGAPORE — Rio Tinto Plc’s Pacific Aluminium unit is still in talks with a state energy supplier to renegotiate terms for New Zealand’s only aluminum smelter, after the company rejected a short-term government subsidy intended to keep the plant running.

Pacific Aluminium and Meridian Energy Ltd. have been renegotiating power contract terms for New Zealand Aluminium Smelters Ltd. (NZAS) for the past three-quarters of a year.
“Our electricity contract negotiations with Meridian have progressed more in the past two weeks than in the previous nine months,” Pacific Aluminium said in an e-mailed statement to AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin April 2. “We believe a commercial agreement that is in the best interests of NZAS, Meridian, the New Zealand government and the people of Southland (region) can be reached,” it added. ....

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