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Qatalum is a 50-50 joint venture between Qatar Petroleum and Hydro, and the project is now entering its final construction phase. The smelter is expected to start up around the end of the year, ramping up production towards an annual full capacity at 585,000 tonnes of primary aluminium during the third quarter of 2010.

“It has been an exciting journey, starting with two square kilometers of sand and building this smelter along with a completely new organization. I am very pleased that the board has chosen the highly experienced and equally competent Haugan to guide Qatalum into production,” says Truls Gautesen (60), who stepped down October 22.

Jan Arve Haugan (52) has had a broad career in Hydro. He has previously had leading positions in Hydro’s former oil and gas business, and played a critical role in the expansion of the Sunndal primary aluminium plant in Norway from 2002 to 2004.

He has headed Hydro’s aluminium technology area, and until now was head of the company’s international smelter portfolio.

Gautesen will now assume Jan Arve Haugan’s role in Hydro as head of the Global Smelters sector of Hydro's Primary Metal business area.

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