German multimetal producer Aurubis has broken ground on the expansion projects at its Pirdop copper site in Bulgaria with an investment of €400m.

The projects include the expansion of the tankhouse for copper production and the development of two additional solar power plants at the Bulgarian site.

Aurubis aims to increase the site’s annual output by approximately 50% to 340,000 tonnes of refined copper through the expansion of the tankhouse.

Besides, there will be an increment in company’s captive solar capacity, complemented by an already approved additional extension stage. In total, the company is building four photovoltaic (PV) plants.

The entire solar park will produce nearly 40MW peak (MWp) of solar power every year.

Once all four modules are complete, Aurubis will mitigate the carbon dioxide emission of about 25,000 tonnes annually.

Aurubis has committed €120m for the tankhouse expansion. It will ramp up production capacity in Bulgaria by 110,000 tonnes.

Aurubis CEO Roland Harings said: “Today’s groundbreaking for two projects impressively demonstrates how we are consistently realising our Driving Sustainable Growth company strategy.

“Investing in expanding the tankhouse will help us meet the globally rising need for copper, the element of the energy transition, even better.”

According to the German company, the Bulgarian site will have the capability to process all the anode copper it produces. This will reduce logistics and mitigate its carbon footprint will be through indirect Scope 3 emissions.

Bulgarian Minister of Economy and Industry Petko Nikolov said: “Our government focuses precisely on investments like this that generate greater added value for the economy.

“Aurubis is among the biggest investors in our country, and we thank the company for trusting Bulgaria, modernizing production, and investing in green technologies.”

The commissioning of the tankhouse is slated to take place in the second half of 2026. Furthermore, the final expansion stage is anticipated to go online in 2026.