Positive meeting to discuss future of the Smelter and relationship matters
A meeting between senior leaders from Rio Tinto/New Zealand Aluminium Smelter (NZAS) and Murihiku Regeneration was held in Wellington on the 28th of November to discuss the future of the Tiwai Smelter and the progress of key workstreams around the 2022 Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two parties.
Dr Michael Stevens (Awarua Representative) and Terry Nicholas (Hokonui) met with the new Chief Executive of Rio Tinto Aluminium – Jerome Pécresse and Managing Director of Pacific Aluminium – Armando Torres to progress understanding and look at how certainty around the future of the Tiwai Smelter might be achieved.
“The meeting was very positive, and both sides have a very clear set of outcomes and timeframes which need to be achieved” said Terry Nicholas, Portfolio Director for Murihiku Regeneration.
“We have made good progress around the commitment to the remediation and both of us want to ensure there is a good outcome for the Awarua community, for the Tiwai workforce and, to ensure we collectively achieve a good remediation programme for the site” said Dr Michael Stevens, Awarua representative.
“Ultimately the decision around the future of the Smelter sits with Rio Tinto. We do have a good understanding of the issues, nut also what a good result will look like if that Smelter continues out to at least 2040. We think good progress can be made around enhanced decarbonisation programmes and to enable new industries and innovation to add value around a long term future of the Smelter” said Terry Nicholas
Both parties have committed to ongoing discussions to try and get certainty early in the new year.
Posted: 1 December 2023