EGA and Chinalco team-up on alumina refinery in Guinea

News Analysis




EGA and Chinalco team-up on alumina refinery in Guinea

The two companies signed a framework agreement to advance their collaboration.

The framework agreement signing ceremony was witnessed by a number of United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Chinese officials, following which both Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) and the Aluminium Corporation of China (Chinalco) pledged to advance the alumina project’s feasibility and joint investment. The alumina refinery, which would be the second in Guinea, West Africa, is being designed with a capacity of 2Mtpy. Construction is expected to be completed by September 2026 and alumina output reportedly planned to initially total 1.2Mtpy.

EGA is a globally integrated aluminium producer and the parent company of Guinea Alumina Corporation which mines bauxite and operates associated export facilities in the Boké province of Guinea. EGA also owns the Jebel Ali aluminium smelter, which operates with a nameplate capacity of 1Mtpy. Chinese state-owned Chinalco is the world’s largest aluminium producer with output in 2023 of 6.7Mt.

The announcement follows a trend for upward integration and securing feedstock in the aluminium value chain. Alumina is the major raw material used in primary aluminium production and is produced by the refining of bauxite. Over recent years, Chinese aluminium producers have continued to strengthen their dominance of the industry, accounting for a little under 60% of global primary supply last year according to Internation Aluminium Institute data. Aluminium’s key role within the energy transition applications means that the metal has a strong outlook over the coming years.