Japan’s Mitsubishi Materials has agreed to buy out its Onahama Smelting and Refining copper joint venture by purchasing the stakes it does not own from DOWA Holdings and Furukawa.

The move comes as the Japanese firm looks to help the smelter overcome surging costs of fuel and electricity.

Mitsubishi Materials currently owns a 55.7% stake in Onahama, which is located in Fukushima, north of Tokyo. DOWA and Fukukawa respectively hold 31.6% and 12.7% stakes in the JV.

Upon closing of the acquisition, Onahama Smelting and Refining will become a 100% wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Materials.

In an effort to become a ‘leader in environmentally friendly mining and smelting business’, Mitsubishi aims to have a 200,000tpa E-Scrap processing capacity by the end of fiscal 2031.

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By GlobalData

Mitsubishi expects the acquisition to help further its efforts to optimise material flow extracted from its various smelting business.

The firm is also looking to improve management and development related to the material grid to commercialisation of various metallic elements contained in e-scrap.

Mitsubishi plans to build a new pre-processing facility for recycling raw materials at the Onahama Smelter and Refinery, upon deal completion.

In a press statement, the Japanese firm said: “In addition, through this conversion, the company will transform Onahama with a flexible and efficient decision-making structure, empowering it to effectively overcome a severe economic environment characterised by soaring operating costs stemming from a variety of external factors (electricity and fuel costs, etc.).

“Moving forward, the company will continue to enhance its corporate value by intensifying collaboration among its companies in its corporate group.”

Said to be the only copper smelter in eastern Japan, Onahama Smelter and Refinery supplies copper materials and copper alloys.