By Adria Calatayud 

Rio Tinto PLC said Wednesday that it will review strategic options, including the possibility of a closure, for its ISAL smelter in Iceland, which is expected to remain unprofitable in the short-to-medium term.

"The strategic review will consider all options including curtailment and closure, and will be complete in the first half of 2020," Rio Tinto aluminum chief executive Alf Barrios said.

The review aims to determine the operation's viability and explore options to improve its competitive position, the mining giant said.

The smelter's uncompetitive energy costs, historically low aluminum prices, and challenging conditions facing the aluminum industry mean it is expected to remain unprofitable, the company said.

Rio Tinto said it will continue discussions with the Icelandic government and power provider Landsvirkjun on how the smelter can return to profitability and become competitive.

Rio Tinto shares in London at 0807 GMT were up 0.5% at 4,172.50 pence.


Write to Adria Calatayud at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 12, 2020 03:27 ET (08:27 GMT)

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