Qatalum reaches important milestone

This week the Qatalum aluminium project has reached a significant milestone by filing the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) with Qatars Supreme Council for Environment and Natural Reserves (SCE).

​Qatar Petroleum and Hydro have been preparing for a major new aluminium project in Qatar since late 2004. It consists of a smelter, a casthouse and a carbon plant as well as a dedicated power plant. Qatar Petroleum and Hydro will each hold 50 percent of the new company. Once State approvals have been secured, construction will start in 2007 and the first production is planned for late 2009.

The assessment shows that the project will have a significant economic impact in Qatar.  The project will create approximately 5,500 jobs for the three-year construction period. When in operation, Qatalum will provide 1,000 jobs in the local community of Mesaieed, south of Doha, the capital of Qatar.

 Of the investments, approximately USD 600 million worth of expenditures on construction materials and services are expected to come from Qatar which will be the equivalent of 6,000 jobs in addition to the on-site construction workforce.

 Environmentally friendly production

Truls Gautesen, Head of Qatalum, expects SCE to shortly convene an expert panel to review Qatalum's EIA report. In this panel also Qatalum's technical staff and consultants will be participating in multi-day review sessions with SCE experts, where all aspects of the proposed project will be closely scrutinized including an inspection of the proposed plant site in Mesaieed.

"We welcome and look forward to answering SCE questions to ensure that the Qatalum project is in compliance with SCE standards and regulations," said Gautesen.

​"Qatalum will have access to Hydro's captive technology, and we have access to their expertise and innovative solutions that were installed in Hydro's recently commissioned project in Sunndal, Norway. Qatalum can also build on the experiences drawn from the start up and first years of operation, as well as, other Hydro technology development activities and projects where we have been involved."

​"Qatalum, will be built using the world's most economical and environmentally friendly production technology," explains Truls Gautesen.