Hydro To Invest US$172 MM In Upgrades To Idled Line At Husnes

Hydro To Invest US$172 MM In Upgrades To Idled Line At Husnes

Norwegian aluminium smelter Norsk Hydro ASA announced yesterday a final build decision on a plan to invest NOK1.4 billion (US$172 million) in a project to double production at its aluminium plant in Husnes, Norway.

Per the press release, Hydro’s expansion project will include the upgrade and start-up of the plant’s second line, which has been idle for almost a decade. The firm says the upgrades, which will be completed by the end of the decade, will make the line more efficient than before.

“We’re committing to aluminum production in Norway based on clean, renewable energy and doing so with world-class technology,” explained Hydro’s head of Primary Metal Hilde Merete Aasheim.

At present the Husnes plant boasts a production capacity of 95 thousand metric tons per annum and employs 245 individuals. Upon completion of the planned upgrades, Hydro estimates the plant will have a nameplate capacity of 190 thousand tons supported by a workforce of 335 people.

Norsk estimates that the newly-improved line will begin production in the first half of 2020.

Norsk Hydro, which was founded in 1905, financed by the Swedish Wallenberg family and French banks, began its life named Norsk hydro-elektrisk Kvælstofaktieselskab (literally, “Norwegian hydro-electric nitrogen limited”) by Sam Eyde. The Norwegian government owns approximately 40% of the company at the present time. Norsk Hydro is one of the largest aluminium companies in the world, with plants in Rjukan, Raufoss, Vennesla, Karmøy, Høyanger, Årdal, Sunndalsøra, and Holmestrand. Norsk also has several plants abroad, including in Germany and Brazil.