Ceramic Industry News

Pechiney to Buy Out Shares in Aluminium Dunkerque

The Pechiney Group, which currently owns 35% of the Aluminium Dunkerque smelter, has reached an agreement with its financial partners, who own the remaining 65% in the plant, to buy out their shares as of December 30, 2003. This agreement is the result of negotiations undertaken during the first half of 2003 with the financial partners with a view to anticipating the exercise of the put options that had been granted to them in June 1990, as stated on page F40 of Pechiney's 2002 20F. This transaction will deal with all of the shares and subordinated loans owned by the financial partners, which will be bought out for around 250 million euros. The consolidation of Aluminium Dunkerque will also lead to Pechiney taking over an estimated year-end debt of around 135 M€. "The planned buy out of all of Aluminium Dunkerque's shares emphasizes for Pechiney the success of the launch 10 years ago of the first AP30 smelter, now the benchmark plant in Europe as far as technical performances, economics and the environment are concerned," said Jean-Dominique Senard, head of Pechiney's Primary Aluminium Sector. "This plant is also the main producer of aluminium slabs in Europe. Pechiney is very appreciative of the constant trust shown by its financial partners since 1990."

For more information, call (33) 15628-2507 or fax (33) 15628-3338. Pechiney's website is located at http://www.pechiney.com .

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