A letter of intent is expected to be sent to Alcoa over the next 10 to 15 days and the deal appears to be based on a subsidised power deal.

Alberto Pili, a councillor for the Carbonia-Iglesias province of Sardina, where the plant is based, said that the Italian Government has provided a guarantee to keep power prices at 35 Euros per megaWatt hour over the next 15 years, which is a very good deal when you consider that, without subsidy, it would be 70 Euros.