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Alcoa to permanently shutdown Suralco refinery and bauxite mines in Suriname

Published 04 January 2017

Alcoa has announced that it plans to permanently shutdown the Suralco alumina refinery and bauxite mines in Suriname.

The company said that it working with the Government of the Republic of Suriname to develop definitive agreements for Suralco’s remaining activities in the country.

However, Alcoa will continue to run the Afobaka hydroelectric facility, which supplied power to the Suralco operations.

Alcoa chief executive officer Roy Harvey said: “We are working in partnership with the Government of the Republic of Suriname to reach the best possible solution that would enable Suriname to maintain its bauxite industry. Dialogue is ongoing and progress is being made.

“As we enter 2017, we also continue to streamline and strengthen our portfolio to better focus on our businesses and the growth opportunities ahead.”

As a result of the permanent closure of the mines and refinery, the company expects to incur $90m in restructuring-related charges in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Its share of total cash costs related to the closure, inclusive of prior accruals, are projected to be $151m over five years.

The company has also announced that the power outage occurred at the Portland Aluminum smelter in Victoria, Australia last month is not expected to have a major negative impact on its fourth quarter results.

The smelter is an unincorporated joint venture between AofA (55%), CITIC (22.5%), and Marubeni Aluminium Australia (22.5%).

AofA and Suralco refinery are part of the Alcoa World Alumina and Chemicals (AWAC) group of companies owned 60% by Alcoa and 40% by Alumina Limited.

In November, Alcoa Corporation had began operating as an independent, publicly-traded company, after the completing the separation from its parent company Alcoa.