Stanislav Kruglyashov, managing director, said the firm is also compelled to move in this direction due to ongoing crisis in global industry, further disruption in gas supply and non-completion of ALSCON’s connection to the national grid project.

The company will also look at further optimisation of payroll, which would also include layoff of part of the staff currently employed. “ALSCON will provide employees being affected with compensation benefits exceeding the level in accordance with the Nigeria law”, Kruglyashov said in a statement.

ALSCON is part of United Company RUSAL, which has been working in Nigeria for the past 7 years and during that time has proved itself a conscientious investor. RUSAL has invested actively into the development of ALSCON and also into the social infrastructure of Ikot Abasi, host council of the company, implementing a number of programmes aimed at raising the standard of living in the region, including projects in education and healthcare.

At present, RUSAL is facing exceptionally tough market conditions and executing a producing cuts programme approved by the board of directors of RUSAL in 2013, aimed at reduction of costs and minimisation of losses. So far, within the framework of this programme, the company has reduced aluminum production at its less-efficient smelters across its territory of operation, including mothballing of smelting operation at five smelters in Russia and at ALSCON in Nigeria.