International Ferro Metals to shut two furnaces in S. Africa to save power
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On March 1, Australia-based ferrochrome producer International Ferro Metals (IFL) announced that it has agreed to shut two of its furnaces in South Africa to help South African utility company Eskom manage tight electricity supply. Accordingly, IFL will switch off the first furnace from March 1 until May 31, 2012, and the second from April 1 until May 31, 2012.
The company said that its contractual commitments to customers will not be affected as these will be serviced from existing ferrochrome stock and production from the second furnace, which will be switched off on April 1.
South Africa has been struggling to meet demand for power as new power plants meant to plug the shortfall in supply have been delayed. Supply will remain vulnerable until the first units of Eskom's new stations become operational next year.
State-owned Eskom had struck similar agreements with other ferrochrome producers such as Xstrata, Samancor and Ruukki.
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