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26. June 2007

Russia's RusAl launches $2bln smelter construction in Siberia

Russia's newly-created aluminum giant United Company RusAl said Monday it had launched the construction of a $2 billion aluminum-processing plant in East Siberia.

United Company RusAl, established in March through a merger of Russian aluminum giants RusAl and SUAL and Swiss Glencore's alumina assets, said the new smelter in Taishet in the Irkutsk Region would have annual capacity of 750,000 metric tons of aluminum.

"UC RusAl's major aluminum assets are concentrated in Russia, and it is here that we see large potential for the development of new plants. We have developed the 'smelter of the future' concept, which complies with the strictest global technological and environmental standards. The implementation of this project will allow the company to increase aluminum output by over 19% and will make an essential contribution to the Russian economy's development," RusAl CEO Alexander Bulygin said.

The Taishet facility is being built by RusAl's engineering and construction division. The new smelter will comprise 4 potrooms, a casthouse, anode and energy shops, gas treatment facilities, and a complete complex of infrastructure facilities, RusAl said in a statement.

The smelter's first batch of aluminum will be produced in November 2009 and the completion of the enterprise is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2011, the statement said.

United Company RusAl is a global aluminum leader accounting for about 12.5% and 16% of global production of aluminum and alumina respectively. The company sells its products in 70 countries worldwide and employs 100,000 people in 17 countries, across 5 continents.

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