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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Press Metal takes insurer to court


PETALING JAYA: Press Metal Bhd is taking Etiqa Takaful Bhd to court over claims related to losses and damages suffered at Press Metal Sarawak Sdn Bhd’s (PMS) smelting plant last year.
Press Metal said in a filing with Bursa Malaysia that its subsidiary PMS had “not reached an acceptable agreement” with its insurers on the claims arising from the incident at its plant in Mukah, Sarawak.
The claimant, PMS, operates the Mukah smelting plant which is undergoing major reconstruction work after the plant’s production facilities suffered damage from a power outage that hit Sarawak on June 27.
Press Metal’s filing did not reveal the amount of the claim but said that its claim against the Maybank-owned insurance firm Etiqa Takaful, the lead insurer, was in respect of all the losses and damages arising from the power outage incident at the Mukah plant and for “any other or further relief for PMS which the court deems just and fit.”
The filing added that the solicitors of Press Metal are of the opinion that it has a good case for its claims.
Press Metal said that for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2013, it had provided an estimated RM90mil for both operating losses and assets written off arising from this incident.
The company said it expected the plant to reach full commercial operations early next month and should contribute positively to Press Metal’s financial year ending Dec 31, 2014.
The six-hour power failure last June had suddenly shut down the smelting plant’s preliminary production lines, which had led to a significant drop in temperature of its production pots.
According to reports, none of the pots could be salvaged as solidification had taken place in the reduction cells of the potline.
Press Metal said the power outage, however, had minimium impact on its Samalaju smelting plant, which was commissioned for production in the fourth quarter of 2012 and was close to achieving full commercial production capacity.
Press Metal’s Samalaju smelting plant is 2.6 times bigger than the Mukah plant, which previously had an installed capacity of 120,000 tonnes per annum of aluminium products.

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