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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Norway Gives Norilsk $30M For Cleanup

Norway will grant Russian metals giant Norilsk Nickel $30 million to introduce ecologically friendly technology at one of its units, Norilsk and the Murmansk regional administration said this week.

Pechenganickel, Norilsk's mining and ore-enriching unit, situated in the northwestern Murmansk region close to the Norwegian border, needs around $100 million to sharply cut emissions of dust and sulphuric gases into the atmosphere.

Nordik Investment Bank will also provide a loan of $30 million, and Norilsk will invest the remaining $40 million, Norilsk and the Murmansk region said in separate statements.

"After the implementation of the project, Pechenganikel will become one of the cleanest metallurgical plants in the world," Norilsk quoted first deputy CEO Dmitry Zelenin as saying.

The new technology will permit a cut in emissions of toxic gases from 150,000 tons per year in 2000 to between 12,000 and 13,000 tons, the Murmansk region said.

Last year Norilsk approved investments of $250 million to $300 million by 2015 to modernize Pechenganikel.

The plan includes development of existing mines and opening a new copper and nickel ore mine, Tsentralny, with annual production capacity of 2.5 million tons of ore, which will increase to 4 million to 4.5 million tons by 2015.

The unit will also introduce new ore- enrichment technologies to increase the content of nickel in matte to 9 percent or 10 percent from 7 percent previously.

Earlier, Norilsk had planned to close Pechenganikel in 2007.