x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Lower prices cited as Aluminium Bahrain falls

Aluminium Bahrain, which owns the world's fourth-largest aluminium smelter, posted a 54.4 per cent slump in last year profits yesterday, citing lower prices for the decline.

Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), which owns the world's fourth-largest aluminium smelter, posted a 54.4 per cent slump in last year profits yesterday, citing lower prices for the decline.

Alba reported net profit of US$256 million (Dh940.3m) for 2012, down from $562.1m in 2011, according to a bourse filing in Bahrain.

The company also blamed higher energy costs for the decline in income. Sales fell 16 per cent year-on-year to $1.98 billion in 2012.

Aluminium cash prices on the London Metal Exchange dropped 16 per cent last year, with an average cash price of $2,019 a tonne, versus $2,398 a tonne in 2011, Alba said.

The country's state-run energy supplier had raised the price of gas it sells to Alba at the beginning of last year by $0.75 per million British thermal units (mmbtu) to $2.25/mmbtu, Tim Murray, the current chief executive, said last February.

Mr Murray, who was previously the chief finance and supply officer, assumed the chief executive's role in October. Alba said its board had recommended a dividend of $52m for the second half of 2012, taking the full-year total to $105m or $0.74 per share.

In December, Alba said it had picked Bechtel Canada to conduct the feasibility study for its proposed $2.5bn expansion plan to add a sixth production line. The move will increase annual capacity by 400,000 tonnes from its current production of 881,000 tonnes a year.

BNP Paribas is the financial adviser on the project, which is expected to be completed in 2015.

 

* Reuters