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Rusal’s 2d-qtr. loss widens, plans more production cuts

Keywords: Tags  United Co. Rusal, aluminum, alumina, Oleg Deripaska, production cuts, Shivani Singh

SINGAPORE — United Co. Rusal’s second-quarter loss widened amid lower aluminum prices as excess global supply forces the company to implement further production cuts.

The Moscow-based company posted a net loss of $458 million for the three months ended June 30 vs. a $55-million loss in the same period last year on revenue that fell 10.7 percent to $2.52 billion.

"Our industry remains in a crisis of its own making, with oversupply leading to excess stock overhanging the market," Rusal chief executive officer Oleg Deripaska said in a statement.

The company’s second-quarter aluminum production of 992,000 tonnes was down 5 percent from a year earlier due to lower output at its Bogoslovsk, Nadvoitsy, Novokuznetsk and Urals aluminum smelters in Russia and the suspension of smelting operations at Alscon in Nigeria.

Rusal said it plans to cut aluminum production at several high-cost smelters by 357,000 tonnes, or 9 percent, this year, a deeper cut than the 300,000 tonnes announced in March.

The company’s alumina output in the second quarter totaled 1.83 million tonnes, down 3.7 percent from a year ago due mainly to the suspension of operations at its Friguia alumina refinery in Guinea in April 2012.

Rusal said its 2013 market outlook remains broadly unchanged, with some improvement in the second half of the year due to seasonally stronger demand.

Global primary aluminum consumption is forecast to reach 50 million tonnes this year, a 6-percent increase from 2012, with China remaining the largest growing market with an expected 9.5-percent growth, followed by India (6-percent growth), Asia excluding China (6-percent growth) and North America (5-percent growth).

A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin.

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