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Hydro and RTA announced the plans for Hydro to take over Søral in July. Following approval from competition authorities in Norway and France, the companies closed the deal on the afternoon of Friday October 31, with effect as of November 1.

"We welcome the 230 employees at Husnes into the Hydro family. As a fully-owned plant, we will now be able to contribute even stronger in strengthening operations at the plant and to serve our customers with value added aluminium products," says Hilde Merete Aasheim, Executive Vice President and head of Primary Metal in Hydro.

With the deal completed, Søral's new plant name will be Hydro Husnes, and the plant has become Hydro's fifth fully owned aluminium smelter in Norway.

"We take Husnes into our portfolio knowing that we can learn a lot from each other, and I am looking forward to see what we will be able to achieve together," says Aasheim.

Hydro Husnes is a primary aluminium plant situated at Husnes on the Norwegian west coast, with an annual production capacity of about 180,000 tonnes of primary aluminium. The plant, which has been operated as a stand-alone unit, idled one of its two production lines in 2009, and is currently producing around 90,000 tonnes of primary aluminium per year.

Prior to the agreement, the plant was owned by Rio Tinto Alcan (50 percent), and Hydro (49.9 percent). Hydro Husnes has 230 employees.

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