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Century Aluminum still working on power arrangements for Ravenswood, Hawesville

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The aluminum market continues to be volatile, and Century Aluminum continues to discuss power arrangements for its Hawesville, Ky. and Ravenswood plants, according to Century President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Bless.

Century reported a net income of $8.3 million for the first quarter of 2013 in its April 25 quarterly earnings report.

Bless said in the news release that Century expects medium and longer-term global trends to be favorable, so the company will execute its strategic plans, but it is working to preserve its flexibility "in the present uncertain environment."

"We continue to discuss with Hawesville's electric power provider an arrangement for supply after the termination of the existing contract in August," Bless said in the news release. "We remain optimistic that a solution exists that would support the plant's continued operation and would have, at worst, no impact on any other rate payer in Kentucky."

Bless also said restarting the Ravenswood aluminum smelter that closed in 2009 "remains a priority, and we are in discussions with the power provider and other key constituencies aimed at finding a suitable arrangement."

Bless said the company is hopeful that a new government expected as a result of the national elections in Iceland at the end of April "will provide the support necessary to allow a restart of major construction activity; an adequate supply of power and a guarantee of the necessary transmission capacity," for its Helguvik plant, which he described as an "attractive project," they were hoping to fully restart.

And Bless said Century has plans for its other overseas plant, Grundartangi, to expand its capacity and restart the anode plant in the Netherlands the company acquired last year.

"Financial results were positively impacted by a litigation reserve adjustment of $2.2 million and an unrealized gain of $15.7 million related to a (London Metal Exchange)-based contingent obligation," reads a news release from Century.

The news release went on to state that results were negatively impacted by severance and other expenses of $2.2 million related to the company's corporate headquarter relocation from Monterey, Calif. to Chicago. Cost of sales for the quarter included a $5.8 million charge for lower of cost or market inventory adjustments, according to the news release.

Sales for the first quarter of 2013 were $321.3 million, compared with $326.2 million for the first quarter of 2012, according to the release. Shipments of primary aluminum for the 2013 first quarter were 158,776 tonnes, compared with 159,967 tonnes shipped in the first quarter of 2012.