EghtesadOnline: Iranian aluminum producers had a total output of 138,781 tons of aluminum ingots during the first four months of the current Iranian year (March 20-July 20) to register a 67% increase compared with the corresponding period of last year.
According to the latest data released by the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO), flagship producer Iran Aluminum Company (IRALCO) accounted for 64,481 tons of the total output, posting a 5% rise year-on-year.
IRALCO is the top producer of aluminum in Iran. The plant, inaugurated in 1972, has an annual production capacity of 180,000.
It was followed by Hormozal Aluminum Company with 30,449 tons, up 186% YOY; Almahdi Aluminum Company with 24,091 tons, up 146% YOY; South Aluminum Company (SALCO) with 12,837 tons, registering no significant change YOY and Iran Alumina Company with 6,922 tons, showing a 342% upsurge.
The total output during the month to July 20 amounted to 37,579 tons, indicating a 78% rise YOY.
Iran Alumina Company produced 83,288 tons of alumina powder during the four-month period, up 5% compared with the similar period of last year.
The company’s output of alumina powder totaled 50,500 tons during the month ending July 20, to register a 15% rise YOY.
Iranian aluminum producers had an aggregate output of 275,716 tons of aluminum ingots during the last Iranian year that ended on March 19, 2020, which indicate an 8% decrease compared with the year before, IMIDRO's latest report shows.
According to Shahriar Taherpour, a former managing director of the Industrial Development and Renovation Organization of Iran, Iran’s per capita aluminum consumption has been around 4.5 kilograms over the past 10 years.
Currently, per capita aluminum consumption in the world is about 9 kilograms.
The US and Canada are the biggest aluminum consumers in the world, with per capita rates of 23 and 27 kilograms respectively.
The Iranian aluminum industry’s biggest challenge currently revolves around supplying raw materials, including alumina and petroleum coke. Not having access to raw materials due to sanctions and also having to purchase them at prices much higher than global rates are issues facing producers.
Plans are underway to connect aluminum production units to railroads and explore new bauxite mines to reduce costs.
Iran’s aluminum production capacity is projected to reach 1.3 million tons per year, once several ongoing projects become operational.
New Plant to Give Major Boost to Production
South Aluminum Corporation (SALCO) located in the city of Lamerd, Fars Province, was inaugurated in April.
According to the former industries minister, Reza Rahmani, the project will boost Iran’s aluminum production capacity to 785,000 tons per year, once all its development phases come on stream.
“The factory has come with a price tag of more than $1.2 billion,” he had said at the inaugural ceremony.
"Cutting-edge technology has been incorporated into the project and the development of the project is in line with environmental concerns."
Once fully operational, SALCO will create a total of 6,500 direct and indirect jobs, Fars News Agency reported.
The company’s shares are owned by two companies. Ghadir Investment Company owns 51% and IMIDRO owns the rest.
The factory is set to produce a range of aluminum products, including sheets, profiles, ingots, doors, windows, composites, nuts and bolts.
SALCO will start the production of 100,000 tons of aluminum ingots per year. The production capacity is expected to reach 300,000 tons per year in a subsequent phase. The final production capacity is to reach 1 million tons of aluminum ingots and billets per year.
SALCO is looking to become Iran’s biggest aluminum producer and the fourth major producer in the Middle East.
The combined nominal capacity of IRALCO located in Arak (Markazi Province), Almahdi Aluminum Company located in Bandar Abbas (Hormozgan Province), Hormozal Aluminum Company also in Bandar Abbas and Jajarm Aluminum Complex located in Jajarm County (North Khorasan Province), stands at 468,000 tons per year.
IRALCO accounts for 175,000 tons of the total followed by Hormozal with 143,000 tons, Almahdi with 110,000 tons and Jajarm with 40,000 tons.