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State Aid

State Aid: Aid to Glencore Nikkelverk to demonstrate a new copper production process




Today, the EFTA Surveillance Authority (“ESA”) has approved a grant of up to NOK 380 million (approx. EUR 39 million) to Glencore Nikkelverk AS for a demonstration project in Kristiansand, Norway.

The project aims at demonstrating a novel, highly efficient electrowinning process for copper production. It focuses on eliminating any source of unnecessary energy losses in the process whilst achieving maximum automation, using advanced materials to make the process more robust and finding technical solutions that will simplify the operation and maintenance of the system.

Innovation in green technologies needs to be supported. The EEA needs innovation to maintain growth and face the major environmental challenges, such as climate change. This is not the first time that ESA has approved this kind of aid and we welcome more good, green projects,” Mr. Sven Erik Svedman, President of the Authority, said.

The aid will be granted by Enova under the new technology programme, which forms part of the Energy Fund scheme as approved by the Authority in July 2011. The grant had to be individually notified to ESA for a detailed assessment because of the amount of aid.

In its assessment, ESA concluded that the project suffers from a funding gap and would not be pursued absent the aid measure. Furthermore, the level of public funding is below the maximum aid intensity of 50% under the Energy Fund scheme. There are also mechanisms to prevent overcompensation in case the investment costs are subject to changes. Finally, the new technology will be available to third parties once it has been successfully verified in the demonstration plant. ESA thus raised no objections to the proposed measure under the EEA state aid rules.

A non-confidential version of the decision will be published in the register of state aid decisions on ESA's website, normally within a month.

For further information, please contact: 

Mr. Andreas Kjeldsberg Pihl
Press & Information Officer
tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 66

Other EEA Institutions

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