SUAL aluminum output up 29% so far in 2003

Company production of first-stage aluminum totaled 441.9 thousand tons for the first half of 2003, an increase of 29.1% from the same period of 2002, SUAL has reported. The increase was largely the result of the group's acquisition of the Volkhov and Volgograd aluminum plants, the group's press office reported. Significant gains for the first half of 2003 over the same period of 2002 also were achieved in the fabrication of aluminum. An increase of 17% was reported for the Kamensk-Uralsk Plant in production of rolled and other worked aluminum. The Mikhailovsk plant for non-ferrous metals doubled its output of foil and film as compared with the same period a year ago with a production of 4,600 tons.

Bauxite production for the first half of 2003 totaled 2.1 million tons, up 10.4% from the same period a year ago. The total production of aluminum ore for all >SUAL enterprises for the first half of 2003 came to 1.01 million tons, up 17.2% from the year before. The increase was attributed to the addition of Glinozem, the Pikalevsky complex, to SUAL and to the implementation of a number of technological improvements in the work of several enterprises in the SUAL group. In addition, output of silicon was down 1.3%, as compared with the first half of 2002, with production of approximately 25.6 tons. The drop reflected the introduction of a tariff barrier to the US market at the beginning of 2003.

The SUAL group (created on the basis of the Siberial-Ural Company) is a vertically integrated company and one of the top 10 world producers of aluminum. It includes 21 enterprises in 11 regions of Russia. It is the leading producer of aluminum ore in Russia and No. 2 (after Russian Aluminum SUAL produces 4 million tons of bauxite, approximately 2 million tons of aluminum ore, more than 860,000 tons of first-stage aluminum, approximately 50,000 tons of silicon and more than 105,000 tons of aluminum products.

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