Aluminium restructuring programme approved by Corporate Assembly
The Corporate Assembly of Norsk Hydro ASA on Thursday approved the proposed restructuring programme for the company's aluminium plants in Norway, to ensure continued profitable operations.
As previously announced, the restructuring programme involves reducing annual operating costs by NOK 350-400 million, with production remaining at the present level. Estimates show that this may involve a reduction of up to 800 man-years. The restructuring process will be completed early next year. The cost of realizing the restructuring programme is estimated at NOK 800 million. Most of this will be charged to the accounts in 2004.
The employee representatives in the Corporate Assembly emphasized that they agree on the need for restructuring but that they do not agree on the presented de-manning figure.
New member of the Board
The Corporate Assembly also elected Kurt Anker Nielsen as new member of the Board of Directors for a period of two years.
Nielsen has previously held management positions at Novo Nordisk A/S and Novo A/S, i.a. as Chief Financial Officer and co-Chief Executive Officer. He currently holds board positions in Novo Nordisk A/S, Novozymes A/S, Novo A/S, DakoCytomation A/S, ZymoGenetics Inc, Coloplast A/S and TDC A/S. Nielsen (58) is a Danish national. With his strong financial background, Nielsen satisfies the criteria as Financial Expert in the Board's audit comittee according to SEC's standards.
Elisabeth Grieg, Borger A. Lenth, Håkan Mogren and Ingvild Myhre were re-elected to the Board for two more years. Lenth was re-elected Deputy Chairperson of the Board.
Anne Cathrine Høeg Rasmussen has, at her own request, retired from Hydro's Board of Directors. Rasmussen has been member of the Board since 1998.
Svein Steen Thomassen was elected as Chairperson of the Corporate Assembly, and Siri Teigum was elected as Deputy Chairperson.