Norddeutsche bids to recyle old EU coins
HAMBURG - Europe\'s largest copper production company Norddeutsche Affinerie AG (NA) said yesterday it is bidding for coin recycling contracts in all 12 EU countries scheduled to introduce the euro on January 1, 2002.
Some of the copper recycled from German coins will be used by an NA subsidiary to produce metal to mint single European currency coins, NA chief executive Werner Marnette said.
\"We are showing an excellent example of the recycling economy in that inside the NA group, some copper won back will be made by (NA subsidiary) Prymetall into new coinage bands used to produce euros,\" Marnette said.
He was speaking at a news conference to mark the arrival of the first consignment of German copper coinage at NA\'s Hamburg plant for recycling yesterday.
Marnette said the company hoped to buy substantial volumes of the estimated 120,000 to 130,000 tonnes of copper coinage which the German government will sell as scrap metal when the euro is introduced, but he declined to give a tonnage estimate.
Thoralf Schlutzkus, coordinator of the company\'s coin recycling project, said it is bidding in all 12 European Union states participating in the euro, but declined to say which countries it had the best chances of winning contracts from.
However, he expected large coin sales to be made very soon because more coins from the old currencies were being handed in fast and central bank storage space was tight.
\"We were originally scheduled to take the first volume of pfennigs (German copper coins) in January but they asked us to start taking consignments in December as the public are giving in a lot of old coins and the regional central banks are running out of storage space,\" Schlutzkus said.
The German government has mounted an extensive advertising campaign to persuade the public to exchange their old coinage for euros in advance to reduce the expected rush in January.
NA and its unit Huettenwerke Kayser use scrap metal as a raw material for new copper production.
REUTERS NEWS SERVICE
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