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Emirates Global Aluminium is set to invest US$3bn to build the UAE’s first alumina refinery in Abu Dhabi
Alumina, extracted from bauxite, is used to produce primary aluminium.
Abdulla Kalban, chief executive of Emirates Global Aluminium, said that feasibility studies for the refinery has been carried out and the plant will be operational by the end of 2017.
In the initial phase, the refinery would produce two million tonnes of alumina annually, and another two million tonnes in the second phase, added Kalban. The project will be financed through a combination of equity and debt.
The demand for aluminium is rising in the UAE mainly due to the booming construction industry. In addition, the region has low energy costs and is equipped with extensive port facilities.
The UAE alone accounts for about 50 per cent of the Gulf’s annual aluminum production of five million tonnes and is the world’s fourth largest producer of the metal, said a report in Reuters.