30 Oct 2012

Lower power price needed by smelter

7:27 am on 30 October 2012

New Zealand Aluminium Smelters says negotiations with Meridian Energy are part of the company's efforts to cut costs in order to return the plant to viability.

A new long term electricity supply agreement begins in January and NZAS wants to negotiate a lower price.

Meanwhile, NZAS has halted $70 million worth of planned spending due to low prices for aluminium and a high exchange rate.

That includes $15 million for the remainder of the year and for next year. NZAS also plans to cut up to 100 jobs by the end of November.

General manager, Ryan Cavanagh said the aluminium industry is going through unprecedented changes.