Home > News > Canada

Rio Tinto to complete Kitimat but doesn't plan new aluminum growth projects

Wednesday, Dec 04, 2013

Rio Tinto Alcan will complete the modernization of its Kitimat smelter in British Columbia but won't add significant new growth projects "for the foreseeable future," CEO Jacynthe Cote said Tuesday.

Cote told an investor seminar in Australia that the revamped Kitimat smelter will be completed by the end of 2014. The transformation will reduce the cost of producing aluminum, but the company needs to continue cutting costs because of low aluminum prices.

"We have come a long way on our transformation journey. ... But we still have more to do to ensure that Rio Tinto's aluminum business delivers greater value to shareholders," she said in a webcast seminar.

Cote said other projects already underway will be completed and highlighted the AP60 pilot project in Quebec that produces 40 per cent more aluminum per cell than earlier technology.

"But you shouldn't expect any significant investment in new alumina or aluminum growth projects for the foreseeable future, given the challenging market conditions," she said.

"There's no Canada specific impact," spokesman Illtud Harri said from London. "It's a general trend across the mining industry after a time of higher capex and higher forecast on growth is changing to more a focus on productivity, cost reduction and cash conservation due to being a different economic environment."

Harri said Rio Tinto has no plans to sell the Alcan operations, after abandoning plans to sell the Pacific aluminum assets.

Recommended exhibitions

Canadian International Aluminium Conference
Palais des congrès de Montréal, Canada
The Aluminium Association of Canada
Conference pr......
21st International Recycled Aluminium Conference
Venue: Shangri La Hotel, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Conference profile:
The 21st International Recycled Aluminium Confe......
Metalex Vietnam 2013
Venue: Saigon Exhibition & Conference Centre
Organizer: Reed Tradex Company
Exhibition profile:
METALEX Vietnam 2013 wil......
2013 Shanghai International Plate, Tube, Bar, and wire Exhib
Venue: Shanghai International Exhibition Center
Exhibition Scope:
1. image show of steel enterprises , steel smelting sk......