Chinese company buys Norway’s Elkem, including Iceland smelter

The Chinese company, Blue Star has purchased the Norwegian heavy industry business Elkem for USD 2.1 billion, it was revealed in Norway this morning. Blue Star is one of the biggest ferrosilicon companies in the world.

Thanks to the Norwegian purchase, Blue Star now owns the Grundartangi ferrosilicon plant in Iceland. Icelandic workers will join Blue Star’s massive 40,000-strong global workforce.

Blue Star’s Norwegian shopping spree has netted it Elkem Silicon Materials, Elkem Foundry Products, Elkem Carbon and Elkem Solar. According to Aftenposten, the Chinese firm paid the purchase sum up front.

It is not yet known what, if any, direct effect the change of ownership will have on Elkem workers.

In other industrial news, The Icelandic Energy Authority has granted Landsvirkjun permission to carry out test drilling for geothermal resources at Gjastykki in Thingeyjarsysla, North Iceland. The licence was granted with the agreement of the local authority and the land owner; but against the wishes of the Minister for the Environment, the Environment Agency and the Natural History Agency.

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