On July 1, 2015, NFC president Wang Hongqian signed MOU with Klappir Development ehf. CEO Ingvar Skulason to build a 240kta aluminum smelter at Hafursstaðir in northwestern Iceland with a total amount of 780 million USD.
Icelandic Prime Minister H. E. Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson and Chinese ambassador to Iceland H.E. Zhang Weidong were present at the signing ceremony, which took place at the Ministerial House in Reykjavík. Chinese counsellor to Iceland Zhong Xuhui, mayors and chairmen of related municipalities, deputy director of global cooperation division of China Development Bank Yu Degao, NFC vice-president Qin Junman and other related personnel also attended the ceremony.
Prime Minister Gunlaugsson said that on the occasion of the 1st anniversary for singing of Icelandic-Chinese FTA, people from both countries are looking forward further mutual beneficial cooperation opportunities. It was pleased to see Hafursstaðir project entering into a new stage after 3-year of preparation, and he hoped it can develop as a model to reflect the expanding Icelandic-Chinese cooperation. Ambassador Zhang Weidong compared the singing of MOU to the first step in a long march, in which the right first step provides sound foundation leading to success. He expressed Embassy’s solid support for project’s subsequent development, and wished it an early kick-off and on-time completion, benefiting Icelanders as soon as possible.
Mr. Wang Hongqian expressed NFC’s gratitude for the strong support from governments of the two countries and CDB. Based on its 30-year experience in operating overseas nonferrous metal project and the advantage of a complete industrial chain, NFC will proactively participate in Sino-Icelandic production capacity cooperation, combing advanced Chinese smelting technology and quality equipment with Iceland’s competitive advantage in power generation from green energy, to construct Iceland’s most efficient and environmental friendly aluminum smelter.
During July 2-4 in Reykjavík, NFC and CDB delegation attended ministerial reception hosted by Icelandic minister for foreign affairs H.E. Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, and visited ambassador Zhang Weidong at Chinese embassy. Mr. Wang comprehensively introduced NFC’s development in recent years, and reported the progress achieved on the project as well as plans for subsequent work. Delegation also had meetings with municipality representatives, Landsvirkjun (the national power company of Iceland), Landsnet (the national power grid company of Iceland), local engineering companies and financing management institutions to deepen mutual understanding and strengthen mutual trust, paving the way for construction.
On July 5, delegation drove to visit the smelter location at northwestern Iceland, and paid visits to municipalities along the way. Representatives of related municipalities introduced their population, industrial structure and infrastructure conditions, expressing their full support and expectations for the project. Delegation also visited the municipality of Skagafjörður and met minister Sveinsson accompayed by municipal council again. Delegation shared impression of site visit, and reached agreement with Mr. Sveinsson on the aim of promoting local economic and social development, diversifying industrial structure, as well as providing more jobs for comunities in a sustainable way.