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In addition, we have included some non-GAAP financial measures in our discussion. Reconciliations to the most comparable GAAP financial measures can be found in the appendix on today's presentation and on our website at www.centuryaluminum.com.I'd now like to introduce Michael Bless, Century Aluminum's President and Chief Executive Officer. Michael Bless – President and Chief Executive Officer Thanks very much, Enrique. If we could turn to slide 4 now, I'd like to make some introductory comments before we move on with the detail. I am going to talk on the next slide about the external environment, so I won't be repetitive here. Suffice it to say, as you all know that the aluminum price along with the price of other commodities has been held down here recently and quite frankly has performed poorly over the last couple of months due to a variety of factors. Again, I'll mention them just a moment and most of them will be if not all of you well known to you. Moving on importantly to our operations, at Hawesville, we did indeed reach and maintained stable operations this quarter as we expected with the plant now operating essentially at full capacity. As we predicted, the cost has started to move down nicely and though we still have ways to go here, I would say, the team has done a really, really excellent job. They inherited say about 9 months ago a reasonably new team, a pretty seriously difficult situation in the middle of last summer, and they have done an extraordinary job in getting the plant to where it is today. We still got ways to go and I'll talk about that in a moment too, but we are very gratified that the job has been done by the management team at Hawesville. The biggest issue remaining at Hawesville now is the power cost. I mean, it's a complex situation and I will talk about it in some detail towards the end of my remarks.
Moving on we had a very busy quarter at Ravenswood as we predicated. I mean, importantly, we reached a key milestone there in reaching an agreement about post-retirement health benefits with our retiree group. That was a complex process that went for some months and we are gratified that we did indeed reach that key point.Next, we had a tax bill passed in support of our power price in the West Virginia legislature in the last couple of weeks. We had great support here from a variety of constituencies in West Virginia on this and importantly terrific leadership from Governor Tomblin of West Virginia and we are very grateful for that leadership. Next on in West Virginia will be the submission of our application to the Public Service Commission for a new contract and I'll talk about that in some detail again later in my remarks. We've begun discussions with representatives of the steelworkers. Those are going well so far, obviously a key part of getting to a restart. So, we are moving along well here and developing again continuing I should say good traction and let me just take a step back for a moment and remind everybody what we are trying to accomplish here in Ravenswood and more importantly, why? You might ask the question we seemed to be bucking a trend a little bit. Others who own similar capacity in similar markets as you all well know tend to be at the very best maintaining that capacity and in many circumstances curtailing that capacity. So, in essence, what's different about Ravenswood? There is a couple of things here and a couple of reasons why we continue to think that this could be a very good investment for our shareowners, i.e., restarting this plant. First and foremost, we think the market environment in the U.S. both current and prospective is conducive to reopening this plant. The supply demand equation in the U.S., the products that this plant will produce has produced successfully and will produce, and the customers for whom it will produce. We think that whole mix is an attractive one.
Second, the physical plant here is in reasonably good shape as you've heard us talk, we've been spending modestly, but spending to maintain the plant in reasonably good order ready for a restart. And though despite the fact that as we've told you before that total cost of a restart here is quite substantial on the order of $80 million it might add that about half of that amount is to build the working capital that you need for a restart. A portion of that non-working capital amount that's attributable to CapEx is relatively modest. So, the plant is reasonably ready to go.Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com