New NRW aluminum alliance

8. December 2021

Six partners, one common goal: Germany’s Nordrhein-Westfalen is to become the center of the industry's sustainable transformation.

There is no need to discuss how significant aluminum is when it comes to achieving climate targets. Nor how significant the industry is for Nordrhein-Westfalen as a business location: around 35,000 people work in the aluminum industry in this federal state alone. "Nordrhein-Westfalen is the most important aluminum location in Germany, and the largest turnover is generated here nationwide," says Economics Minister Andreas Pinkwart.

Joint commitment

To underline the commitment to Nordrhein-Westfalen as an aluminum location, six partners have now signed a joint declaration: Speira, TRIMET Aluminium, Aluminium Deutschland, IG Metall, IG BCE and the NRW Ministry of Economics have launched the Aluminium Alliance NRW.

"Driving the transformation forward"

The declaration is the starting signal for intensive cooperation between the state government, employee representatives and industry. The close exchange between the partners serves the goal of "successfully driving forward the transformation to a sustainable industry, expanding the circular economy and the associated supply of raw materials, and strengthening the closed aluminum value chain at the site," according to the jointly published declaration. In this context, the rapid expansion of renewable energies at competitive costs, access to research funding, but also free and fair competition on the markets are at the center of the joint considerations.

Already a technology leader

"We welcome the dialogue and the commitment of the state government to accompany and politically support the aluminum industry in its transformation," says Hinrich Mählmann, president of Aluminium Deutschland. "The German aluminum industry is committed to sustainability and climate protection and wants to be an enabler for the European Green Deal. We are already technology leaders in the areas of recycling and circular economy. We will continue to improve our processes and products to reduce our CO2 footprint. And we will support our customers in reducing the emissions of their products."

Political flanking measures essential

At the same time, he points out that industry can only survive in international competition if it cooperates with political and social stakeholders: "Clever political flanking is central to the competitiveness of the location. Together, we must prevent industry from migrating to regions with lower standards and less ambitious climate protection programs."