Welsh Secretary Visits Island Aluminium Smelter

by Geraint Roberts

Welsh Secretary Paul Murphy is visiting the Anglesey Aluminium smelter at Holyhead to discuss the future options for the plant with local managers, workers and union representatives.

Mr Murphy has said that he will be meeting ministers from the Department for Business and the Department for Energy and Climate Change next week with a view to a solution to providing the smelter with a secure electricity supply.

Currently the aluminium plant at Holyhead is due to shut down in September as the special contract with nearby Wylfa Nuclear Power Station will end and the nuclear plant is due to close in 2010.

There have been suggestions that Wylfa could be given and extension beyond 2010, with a possibility of at least a further two years generation which would be hugely significant for Anglesey Aluminium.

A business case has been made by the nuclear site operator which is being presented to the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, which in turn will present the case to the Government.

Clearly, the cost of electricity is the key issue for the smelter at Holyhead and Mr Murphy is mindful of the potential knock-on effects of the smelter's closure on small businesses across Wales.

In addition to his visit to Anglesey Aluminium, Mr Murphy is also meeting with managers at Stenaline, the ferry and freight shipping company at the Port of Holyhead, and with economic development officials at the local authority.

Tourism is a key contributor to economic activity on the island and the Welsh Secretary will pay a visit to Llanfairpwll and meet with the island's small business representatives in this sector.

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Mar 27, 2009
rio tinto power
by: Jeff

most important thing is to get the goverment to keep Wylfa going for a few more years. that will give time to build a new power station. extend Wylfa as long as poss

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