Foreign workers to leave Iceland by 2008 Skip to content

Foreign workers to leave Iceland by 2008

Nearly 2,500 foreign workers from the companies Bechtel and Impregilo, who have been working on the constructions of the dam at Kárahnjúkar and the smelter in Reydarfjördur in east Iceland, will leave in the next few months.

According to Björn S. Lárusson, communications officer at Bechtel, there are currently about 1,600 foreign workers participating in the construction of the Alcoa smelter in Reydarfjördur, Morgunbladid reports.

The first workers will be granted leave in the end of April. By the end of this year, when the smelter is scheduled to finish, nearly all will have returned to their homes. Only 15 percent of Bechtel’s employees are Icelanders.

Over 1,000 foreign workers are currently participating in the dam’s construction in Kárahnjúkar, and by the end of the year only about 200 or 300 will be left in Iceland.

According to dam spokesperson Sigurdur Arnalds all employees of Impregilo will have left by the spring of 2008. Only 20 to 30 people will be needed to run the dam at Kárahnjúkar in the future.

Arnalds said more jobs will be created in the industry that uses the energy from the dam than at the dam itself. About 400 people are expected to work at the smelter in Reydarfjördur in the future.

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