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Major aluminum market developments in September

Jul 20th 2015 at 6:53 PM


Reuters reported that production restarts and lacklustre demand will prevent aluminum prices from making significant upside progress in the coming months and if anything they will favour a move lower.Analysts said that while inventories of the metal have stopped accumulating for now, they have levelled off at very high levels with no signs of being drawn down to any great extent.Mr David Thurtell analyst of Citigroup said that "Stocks at least have stopped rising. That's encouraging but there's still too much capacity being reopened, particularly in China for prices to rally much from here."Mr Angus MacMillan independent consultant said that fabricators had been restocking recently but only because they had run their inventories down to very low levels. There's not going to be any great surge in underlying demand much before the H2 2010.Mr Massimo Rossi a senior analyst at industry consultants CRU Group said that sentiment was neutral to negative and he expected prices to trade sideways unless there was some poor economic news. He did not rule this out. He said that investors are starting to question the strength of the recovery and whether we will see another drop in economic activity later on in the year.Below are some of the more significant recent developments in production, stocks and prices that may influence the direction of the market in 2009.Production:1. September 30 - Noranda Aluminum Holding Corporation said that it has initiated steps to return operations to full effective capacity at its New Madrid aluminium smelter in the United States. The company has recalled 38 hourly workers in preparation for the restart of its third potline in early October.2. September 24 - Sterlite Industries India said that a chimney under construction at Bharat Aluminium Company Limited, Korba collapsed. The chimney is at a power plant associated with a 325,000 tonnes per year aluminium expansion project.3. September 23 - United Company RUSAL said that it had appealed in Guinea against a local court's decision to retake its alumina unit and was considering an international arbitration in Paris. A court in Guinea said that earlier this month the 2006 sale of the Friguia alumina refinery to UC RUSAL was unlawful and the Guinean state was retaking ownership of its largest industrial operation.4. September 21 - Daily average primary aluminium output rose to 63,000 tonnes in August from a revised 62,800 tonnes in July, provisional figures from the International Aluminium Institute showed. Primary aluminium output in China rose to 1.153 million tonnes in August from 1.088 million in July.5. September 18 - India's Hindalco Industries expects output from its Utkal alumina project in the eastern state of Orissa to start by around July 2011.5. September 18 - Indian state run National Aluminium Company said that it had got the federal government's nod for a bauxite mining lease in Andhra Pradesh state, where it plans to build a refinery. NALCO said that it was planning to build a 1.4 million tonne per year alumina refinery in the Visakhapatnam district of the state.6. September 17 - India's NALCO said that it is likely to sign a JV agreement for a greenfield aluminium smelter in Iran in the next few months. NALCO plans to build a 310,000 tonnes per year smelter and a power plant in Iran with Iran's Kerman Development Organization.7. September 17 - Rio Tinto Alcan said that it is preparing to restart idled production capacity at its Vaudreuil alumina refinery in Quebec Canada. The company said that market conditions warranted restarting the 25% of capacity idled last January.8. September 15 - Alcoa's AWAC has opened the Juruti bauxite mine in Brazil and said that initial output at the mine will ramp up to 2.6 million tonnes per year. The company said that the 2.1 million tones per year expansion of its Alumar alumina refinery in Sao Luis, Brazil is on schedule for commissioning later this autumn.9. September 11 - The Aluminum Association said that the annual rate of primary US aluminum production tumbled 40.1% to 1,570,783 tonnes in August from 2,622,839 tonnes in August 2008 and was down 1.5% from July's annual rate of 1,594,096 tonnes.10. September 11 - The chairman of China's top aluminum firm Chalco said that China currently has 20% to 30% excess production capacity of both primary aluminum and alumina.11. September 11 - China produced 7,867,400 tonnes of primary aluminium in the first 8 months of the year down 9.5% from a year earlier. Production of alumina fell by 6.6% over the same period to 14,839,300 tonnes.12. September 10 - United Company RUSAL said that it has completed USD 300 million upgrade of its Krasnoyarsk plant aimed at making the smelter more environmentally friendly.13. September 9 - Emirates Aluminium planned to be the world's largest single aluminium smelter is 60% completed. In March, Dubal Aluminium Company which owns Emal jointly with Mubadala Development Company said that the Phase I with a 700,000 tonnes per year capacity would come online in December.14. September 7 - Venezuela has fallen behind with exports of alumina to clients including Glencore because a lack of investment and low prices for basic materials has hit output at the state owned Bauxilum Company. Production is expected to drop to 1.4 million tonnes in 2009 from 1.6 million tonnes in 2008.15. September 3 - Jamaica's St Ann Bauxite Partners Limited plans to return to nearly full production within 3 months. The company now operates at 64% of capacity, producing 3 million tonnes of bauxite annually at the mine. Privately held Noranda Aluminum Holding Corporation of the United States owns 49% of the mine after recently buying a share held by Century Aluminum.16. September 1 - Bosnia's largest exporter Aluminij Mostar, the country's sole aluminum smelter, began returning to full production because of increased demand and the recovery of the metal's prices on world markets. The company cut output by a quarter this year due to the global economic downturn and to high electricity prices. The plant produced 123,000 tonnes of metal in 2008.(Sourced from Reuters)

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