Russian company Rusal produced 3.75mn mt of primary aluminium in 2019, unchanged from the previous year. The company’s sales increased by 13.8pc after the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions on the company were removed in Jan 2019. Rusal’s production accounted for 5.9pc of the total global aluminium output in 2019.
Rusal, the second-largest primary aluminium producer in the world, expects global demand for aluminium to increase in 2020, fuelled by the transportation sector which has been introducing new electric vehicles and increasing the content of aluminium in existing cars. The company estimates the global demand for aluminium to rise by 1.3pc to 66.1mn mt in 2020, with China’s demand increasing by 1.5pc to 37.3mn mt. Demand in the rest of the world, excluding China, is likely to increase by 1.1pc to 28.8mn mt. Rusal, however, has warned that Covid-19 could negate this growth trend amidst weak demand relative to China’s surplus supply of aluminium.
Rusal’s utilisation rate of aluminium production remained unchanged at 96pc in 2019 from the previous year. Sales in the period increased by 505,000mt as the company sold surplus inventory accumulated in the prior year due to OFAC sanctions and the launch of Rusal’s first potline at Boguchansky aluminium smelter. Sales to Europe were the highest in 2019, constituting 54pc of the total and up by 5pc from the previous year.
In Q4 (Oct-Dec 2019), Rusal produced 949,000mt of primary aluminium, up by 0.7pc from the previous quarter and sales increased by 1.5pc to 1.1mn mt.
Rusal’s secondary alloy production increased by 106.4pc to 18,200mt in 2019, from 8,800mt the previous year. In the Q4, alloy production rose by 151.5pc to 7,200mt from 2,800mt in the previous quarter.
In 2019, Rusal’s bauxite output also increased by 15.9pc to 16mn mt and alumina output rose by 1.1pc to 7.9mn mt from the previous year.