3 Jul 2009

New Caledonia's Vale Inco plant launch delayed

3:30 pm on 3 July 2009

The launch of the Vale Inco nickel plant in the Southern Province of New Caledonia has again been delayed after it was to be operational in the middle of this year.

The company's managing director, Jean-Francois David, says it is still in the process of finishing and commissioning of the plant, with a view to start operations before the end of the year.

He says Vale Inco is working on different scenarios, one for the end of August, and others depending on how the commissioning goes.

Mr David says in April, Vale Inco was forced to stop the project after an acid spill during a test.

"In every industrial project, you have inevitable delays. You have a plan, you follow the plan, and then you have some unexpected situations that come in your calendar. For example the acid spill has stopped us for more than two months. It comes in contradiction with the plan."

Jean-Francois David