Job applications pour in for new solar venture

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Even before its 70 new jobs were advertised, officials at Elkem Solar had received around 250 applications from people wanting to work at the solar cell plant it’s reopening in Porsgrunn, Telemark County.

The plant at Herøya was shut down by solar energy firm REC in 2012 when it ran into financial challenges. Now Elkem Solar plans to reopen it and started putting out  “help wanted” ads for 70 people Friday afternoon.

“Many from REC have applied, but also many people who’ve worked in the oil industry,” said plant direcgtor Geir Ausland. The new operation, a welcome venture at a time of cutbacks at oil and offshore companies in Norway, will need process operators, engineers and managers.

“We’ll recruit and hire based on competence,” Inge Grubben-Stømnes, chief executive of Elkem Solar, told state broadcaster NRK. “It will be a good blend, some from the old REC and some new.” staff