The American aluminium producer has been locked in a long-running battle with the Big Rivers Electric Corporation over the price of electricity, which, claims Century, has forced it to consider its options concerning the viability of the plant.

The Hawesville smelter, which employs 700 people, has been under the shadow of possible closure ever since Century gave Big Rivers 12-months' notice on 20th August this year, claiming it was not obligated to continue operating the plant.

Under the right economic circumstances, Century claims that it can keep the smelter open.

A decision is expected soon on Century's Ravenswood smelter in West Virginia, which has been closed since 2009 due to a power rate dispute with the West Virginia Public Service Commission.