Russian, Chinese Aluminum Producers In Partnership

Russia's UC Rusal will build aluminum complexes in Guinea and China in partnership with China Power Investment Corp.

LONDON (AP) β€” Russia's UC Rusal, the world's largest aluminum producer, said Monday it will build a bauxite-alumina complex in Guinea and an energy and aluminum smelter complex in China in a partnership with China Power Investment Corp.

The aluminum smelter will be located in Qinghai Province, China and will have a minimum production capacity of more than 551 tons a year. The smelter will secure its electricity supply from CPI's hydropower facilities on the Huang He River. The Guinea bauxite-alumina complex will have a capacity up to 3 tons of alumina a year.

Alumina, a white powdery substance made from bauxite, is an intermediate step in the making of aluminum.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

The two projects will create a vertically integrated aluminum production complex. Rusal will hold a stake of up to 49 percent in the Chinese aluminum smelter, and CPI will hold up to 49 percent of the Guinea bauxite-alumina complex.

The parties will finance the projects in proportion to their ownership and will create a working group to conduct an audit and feasibility study, planned to be completed by mid-2008. The joint project may start in 2009, Rusal said.

Rusal chief executive Alexander Bulygin said China, the world's largest aluminum consumer and producer, is one of the most promising regions for the company's business development.
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