Alba Obtains US$700 MM for Financing Line 6 Project

Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C. announced yesterday that it had secured US$700 million in financing for the construction of its sixth aluminium production line.

The financing from the Export Credit Agency (ECA) will be composed of two tranches, one of US$310 million and a second composed of a EUR315-million SERV Guaranteed Export Credit and a EUR50-million Euler Herms Guaranteed Export Credit.

The SERV guarantee is slated to fund the construction of a power station to be built by General Electric containing three 9HA gas turbines, three steam turbines and three heat recovery steam generators (HRSGs). It was negotiated with a fifteen-year tenor, with the principal amount to be paid out over a dozen years. The Herms Export Credit is earmarked for building a power-distribution system to be built by Siemens with a high voltage electrical network and a gas-insulated switchgear engineered to handle an electrical pressure of up to 220kV.

“Securing the Export Credit Financing for Power Station 5 and Power Distribution System is a strong vote of confidence in Line 6 Expansion Project,” remarked Alba’s board chairman Shaikh Daij Bin Salman Bin Daij Al Khalifa. “We look forward to work with the Swiss and German Governments as well as with GE and Siemens to progress with Line 6 as per schedule.”

The Line 6 Expansion Project will increase Alba’s overall capacity by over half a million metric tons per annum to a yearly capacity of 1.5 million metric tons. The new line is anticipated to begin production in the first months of 2019.

Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C., or simply Alba, is one of the largest industrial companies in the Middle East and is one of the top 10 largest aluminium producers in the world. Originally incorporated in 1968, the company is based in Bahrain and 87% of its total workforce are Bahraini nationals. It began operations in 1971 with a 120,000 metric ton annual capacity. Modernization bumped the output up to 450,000 metric tons in 1992. In the spring of 2005, Alba opened Line 5, raising output by 860,000 metric tons per year. Maximum output for the smelter is in the neighborhood of 1.2 million metric tons per year.

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