Nyrstar slashes zinc output as power prices surge

Oct 13 (Reuters) - Nyrstar will cut production by up to 50% at its three European zinc smelters from Wednesday due to the soaring price of electricity, the Belgium-based company said in a release.

“The cost burden of carbon emitted by the electricity sector which is passed on to industrial and domestic customers, mean it is no longer economically feasible to operate the plants at full capacity,” Nyrstar said.

“Indirect cost compensation for energy-intensive producers to protect their competitiveness versus non-EU producers varies by European country and this puts Nyrstar’s Budel, Balen and Auby plants at a competitive disadvantage, compounding the impact of extreme energy prices.”

Nyrstar did not say how much zinc production would be lost or provide the production capacity of the three smelters.

Record high natural gas prices are pushing some energy-intensive companies to curtail production in a trend that is adding to disruptions to global supply chains. (Reporting by Pratima Desai in London; editing by Jason Neely)