June 9, 2023: Production figures of the newly restarted German lead plant Stolberg are to be kept under wraps, Batteries International has learned.
Stolberg’s acquisition by the Trafigura Group was completed in February and the firm said on April 6 that the plant had been restarted after being out of action since 2021.
The plant is now being run by Trafigura’s Nyrstar business — but a spokesperson told Batteries International on 2 June no production figures for any Trafigura asset would be released.
The spokesperson declined to discuss potential new investment at the site — despite Nyrstar saying last year there would be “continuous assessment” of future investment once the acquisition had been finalized.
Stolberg previously had the capacity to produce 155,000 tonnes of lead and more than 100 different specifications of market-leading lead alloys and produce 130,000 tonnes of sulphuric acid.
Batteries International reported last November that four European lead smelters had been placed under review for potential temporary closure as the region grappled with the combined economic and energy crisis fuelled by the Russia-Ukraine war.
Last month, it was revealed that lead and zinc processing at Glencore’s Portovesme subsidiary in Italy could be replaced with a lithium ion battery recycling operation in partnership with Li-Cycle.