UniCredit has agreed to loan €30mn to Metalleghe for the construction of a new silicon metal plant in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Italian export credit agency Sace has agreed to guarantee 50% of the first tranche, or €3.5mn.

The loan will be made in two parts. The first will be through a line of credit in Italy, where Metalleghe is headquartered, and a stand-by letter of credit for the main contractor that will build the new furnaces. The second will be a leasing arrangement that will be made available for the facilities in Bosnia.

UniCredit decided to work with Metalleghe because of its sound financial footing and valid international development plans, outlines Ferdinand Natali, area manager of UniCredit in Brescia.

The Italian silicon and ferroalloys producer already has operations in Bosnia but is looking to expand them with the new plant. Tenova (part of the Techint Group) has been hired to construct the new plant.

At the current operations, Metalleghe produces 18,000 to 20,000 tonnes per year of silicon metal and silicon fume and exports it to Italy, Hungary, Slovenia, Germany, Slovakia and Poland.