European Commission takes Italy to court for failing to recover €18M in state aid to aluminum producers; in 2010, country offered favorable terms to certain industrial power consumers to persuade Alcoa to keep local plants running

LOS ANGELES , February 8, 2012 () – The European Commission announced Feb. 8 that it had taken Italy to the European Court of Justice, as the country did not comply with the Commission's decision regarding state aid to three aluminum producers, including New York-based Alcoa Inc, Reuters reported the same day.

The Commission had asked Italy last year to recover €18 million of aid that was granted to Alcoa, Rusal and ILA in the form of favorable power tariffs. In 2010, the country offered favorable conditions to certain industrial power consumers to persuade Alcoa to keep its local plants operating.

Alcoa recently announced that it would shutter operations at its Portovesme plant in Sardinia that has a capacity of 150,000 tonnes per year. The company also scaled back production at two smelters in Spain as it targets more costly European-based operations.

The primary source of this article is Reuters, London, England, Feb. 8, 2012.

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