The International Aluminium Institute (IAI) announced this week that it has chosen Norsk Hydro’s Hilde Merete Aasheim as its new Chair. Norsk’s Executive Vice President of primary metal business will be replacing Abdulla Kalban, Chief Executive Officer of Emirates Global Aluminium, who is stepping down after two years in the position. The appointment was made at the recently-completed 89th meeting of its Board of Directors in Shanghai, China.
“It is a great honor for me to have been elected by my peers to Chair the Institute at this time of unprecedented change in the aluminium industry,” remarked Aasheim. “I look forward to building on Abdulla’s achievements over the last two years to advance further the role our modern metal plays in improving people’s quality of life, through its innovative applications and unique properties.
“We see growing demand for lightweight, strong, safe and energy efficient aluminium products across all market segments and, through the IAI, we will continue to promote sustainability and resource efficiency along the metal’s value chain,” she continued.
“For most of us 2015 has been the most challenging of years, with commodity prices depressed, stagnant growth and increasing geopolitical and economic uncertainty,” explained outgoing Chair Kalban. “Demand for aluminium products remains robust, however, with exciting times ahead as advances and innovation continue in the transportation sector in particular. But we know there remain a number of global challenges, with drivers both internal and external to our industry, and I am confident that under Hilde’s leadership the IAI will be in a strong position to respond to them.”
A member of Norsk Hydro’s Corporate Management Board since spring of 2009, Aasheim was the Executive Vice President of Aluminium Metal business area beginning in November 2008. She started with Hydro in the fall of 2005 as Executive Vice President for Leadership and Culture (human resources, health, environment, safety and corporate social responsibility). Aasheim came to Hydro from Oslo’s Elkem, a firm that produces solar grade silicon, silicon, alloys for the foundry industry, carbon, and microsilica. Aasheim has a master’s degree in business economics from the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration. She also holds a certification for public accounting from the Norwegian government.