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Impol Successful in Expansion Drive

Slovenska Bistrica, 22 March (STA) - Impol, the Slovenska Bistrica-based manufacturer of aluminium products, saw 4.5% growth in volume output last year, planning to expand as much this year. The company made a profit of EUR 13.7m on revenues of EUR 464m.

Chairman Jernej Čokl says the figures are close to the goal set in the financial plan for 2013, although revenue was 10% below targets due to volatility in aluminium prices.

The company also plans 4% growth for this year, and has even been ahead of plans due to the great many orders in the first months of the year. But Čokl also says the credit crunch remains a limiting factor.

"If you want to increase output, it's obvious you need more money and if the banks don't follow, there can be a problem. This is not yet the case and I hope it'll stay that way," says Čukl, adding that Impol has always paid its bills and settled its debts on time.

One of Slovenia's biggest exporters, which supplies products for various industries, from automotive, pharmaceutical to aerospace, also made EUR 90m worth of investment in the past period.

This includes the completion last year of a EUR 17m project in the Serbian subsidiary Seval, and a EUR 12m investment in a new foundry in Slovenska Bistrica, which is due for completion in April.

The latter investment will enable the company to get raw materials cheaper, to increase the output of alloys, and in turn make more profit, Čokl says.

The company plans to increase the annual output from 185,000 to 215,000 tonnes of processed aluminium by 2020. Čokl also underscores the need to restructure production line to increase value added.

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