NEW YORK A private Chinese company could establish aluminum smelters in Russia in a joint venture with United Co. Rusal, the Moscow-based company said.
A memorandum between UC Rusal and Chinas Shandong Xinfa Group could also lead to joint work on alumina and bauxite, Rusal said.
The companies have three months to set up a joint working group to study potential areas of cooperation. They then have until June 30 to identify those proposals with the best potential.
Investment would be sought from Chinese lenders, and the legal detail of any future cooperation is still subject to further discussion, Rusal said.
Volatility in the metal markets and growing global demand for aluminum had caused output costs and energy tags to rise, chief executive officer Oleg Deripaska said.
"China, as one of the worlds aluminum industry drivers, has therefore been forced to search for ways to transfer primary aluminum production abroad," he said. "Siberian regions of Russia are an obvious top pick, not only because of their top-line aluminum smelting greenfields, but the entire industrial clusters."
Rusal made up some 9 percent of world aluminum output last year.