Rusal Will Not Reopen Closed Aluminum Smelters, Even if Prices Keep Rising

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Source: Novelis

United Co. Rusal, the world’s largest aluminum producer, will keep 700,000 metric tons of output it idled in 2013 and 2014 permanently shut, helping to buoy prices of the metal.

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“We cut production to 3.6 million tons last year and we are not planning to reopen the mothballed capacity, regardless of the price,” Chief Executive Officer Vladislav Soloviev said in an interview with Bloomberg News in Moscow this week. “Those plants were the least effective among our assets, so we are dismantling them now.”

Aluminum prices have risen about 13% in the last year, and the market, excluding China, expanded by 7%.

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The cash price of primary Chinese aluminum saw the biggest upwards shift for the day, rising 1.7% to close at CNY 12,910 ($2,062) per metric ton on Tuesday, February 3. Prices for Chinese aluminum bar have gained increasing momentum since Wednesday, January 28. After climbing 1.7%, the metal closed at CNY 12,920 ($2,063) per metric ton. On the tail of a three-day flat streak, the price of Chinese aluminum scrap rose by 1.6%, settling at CNY 12,400 ($1,980) per metric ton. The price of Chinese aluminum billet remained essentially flat at CNY 13,200 ($2,108) per metric ton.

On the LME, the 3-month price of aluminum increased 1.0% to $1,865 per metric ton. On the LME, the cash price of primary aluminum rose 0.8% to $1,851 per metric ton. At INR 116.00 ($1.88), the Indian aluminum cash price finished the market day up 0.6% per kilogram.

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