Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 23 May 2019

Bahrain's Alba closes two ECA-backed loans for expansion project

Aluminium smelter's Line 6 expansion is one of the biggest brown-field developments in the region

Aluminium Bahrain has closed two credit facilities for its Line 6 expansion project. Bloomberg
Aluminium Bahrain has closed two credit facilities for its Line 6 expansion project. Bloomberg

Aluminium Bahrain, one of the Middle East’s top aluminium smelters, closed two export credit financing facilities as it looks to finalise its Line 6 Expansion Project.

The loan facilities consisting of $136 million (Dh499.5m) and €90m (Dh376.2m) will be used to finance the provision of equipment for the Line 6 expansion, one of the biggest brown-field projects in the Arabian Gulf, the company said in a statement on Monday to Bahrain bourse, where its shares are traded.

Export Development Canada (EDC) has provided the $136m loan with a 10-year tenor while Japan Bank for International Co-operation and Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (JBIC-NEXI) have supported the €90m finance facility divided into two contract loans, with 10-year and six-year tenor, it added.

Facilities are “a step closer towards transforming our vision into reality with the safe start-up of Line 6”, said Alba’s chairman Daij Al Khalifa.

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The mandated lead arranger for the EDC covered-facility is Citibank while BNP Paribas was the lead arranger for JBIC-NEXI supported-loans.

Alba has successfully closed a $1.5 billion syndicated term-loan facility comprising two tranches: a conventional facility; and an Islamic loan in October 2016.

Established in 1971 as a 120,000 tonnes per year smelter, Alba today has production capacity of more than 1 million tonnes annually. The Line 6 expansion project, which has a total capex of $3bn, will boost Alba’s yearly production by 540,000 tonnes.

Listed on both the Bahrain Bourse and London Stock Exchange, the company is majority held by Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat Holding Company with a 69.38 per cent stake. Saudi Arabia’s Sabic Industrial Investment Company controls 20.62 per cent of the company, while remainder is listed on the bourses.

Updated: January 21, 2019 04:32 PM

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