Group Aluminium
Alcoa to sell Suriname refining operations
(Minews) - Alcoa Inc. intends to sell its refining operations in Suriname to a government-owned company and plans to curtail additional refining capacity as it tries to improve profit amid sluggish prices and a supply glut.

New York-based Alcoa, the world’s largest aluminum producer by revenue, said it expects to reach a sale agreement by July 1. The planned sale of Suralco, or Suriname Aluminum Co., would include mining, refining and Afobaka hydroelectric operations.

Meanwhile, Alcoa said it would curtail 443,000 metric tons per year of alumina refining capacity at Suralco by April 30. About 700 people and an unspecified number of contractors work at the Paranam refinery and related mining operations.

Suralco’s total refining capacity is 2.2 million metric tons per year, with 876,000 currently idled, the company said.

Alcoa’s presence in Suriname dates back to 1916, according to the company’s website. Suralco signed an agreement with the South American government in 1958 to develop the country’s hydropower and produce aluminum.

The announcement comes two weeks after Alcoa said it was considering shedding 500,000 tons, or 14%, of its smelting capacity and 2.8 million tons of refining capacity as it shifts investment to more the more profitable auto and aerospace markets.

In 2014, Alcoa posted its best operating results since 2008 with a net profit of $268 million compared with a loss of $2.3 billion a year earlier.

Shares, up 10% over the past 12 months, were down 1.47% in recent trading at $13.10.
Publish date : Thursday 19 March 2015 12:26
Story Code: 22990
Source : WSJ