Davis Index: Market Intelligence for the Global Metals and Recycled Materials Markets

Alcoa’s global primary aluminium output dropped by 5.5pc to 2.13mn mt in 2019, because of curtailments at various smelters.

Alcoa’s smelter in Bécancour, Canada, restarted production in the second half of 2019, after a prolonged process to reach long-term labour agreements, curtailing the year’s primary aluminium output. 

Smelters at Avilés and La Coruña in Spain were also curtailed and subsequently divested in mid-2019, leading to a 124,000mt drop in Alcoa’s total primary aluminium output in 2019, from 2.25mn mt in 2018.

The fall in output was partially offset by a full year of production at Alcoa’s Warrick smelter in the US.

At the end of 2019, Alcoa’s aluminium segment had 766,000mt of idle smelting capacity on a 3mn mt base capacity. 

Idle capacity dropped by 150,000mt and base capacity dropped by 180,000mt from the previous year.

Alcoa’s alumina output increased by 3.5pc in 2019, up from 12.9mn mt in 2018 to 13.3mn mt, and bauxite output increased by 3.5pc to 47.4mn mt, from 45.8mn mt the previous year. A total of 30pc of Alcoa’s alumina supplies are bought by its own aluminium smelters.

Alcoa expects 2020 primary aluminium output to increase after production restarted at its Bécancour smelter in Canada.

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