20 Dec 2012

More smelter power price talks held

11:51 am on 20 December 2012

Meridian Energy says it has been talking during the past two weeks with managers at Southland's Tiwai Point smelter about the price it charges for electricity.

Neither Meridian nor smelter owner New Zealand Aluminium Smelters is making any comment, however, and the power firm does not expect to be able to say anything until next year.

In August, New Zealand Aluminium Smelters said it was losing money and needed to renegotiate the price it pays for its electricity.

The company has reduced its workforce at the Bluff smelter by 100 and warned recently it would need to pursue unspecified cost-cutting measures next year as well.

The company has long enjoyed a deal, first with the Government and then with Meridian, giving it cheaper power prices than other companies pay.