Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C. (Alba) released results for the final quarter and full year of 2020 last week. Financial numbers were generally up in both periods despite the global pandemic and its effect upon the aluminium sector.
In the fourth quarter of 2020 Alba turned a profit of US$85.1 million, better by 132 percent on the year. Total Comprehensive Income totaled US$87.7 million, up by 138 percent on the year, while gross profit for the quarter rose by 34 percent to US$119.1 million.
Profits in the quarter suffered due to a fall in metal sales, but was partially offset by a rise in aluminium prices.
For the full year Alba returned a profit of US$25.9 million, increased by 81 percent over last year. Total Comprehensive Income fell by 73 percent to US$3.9 million, but gross profit was up by 56 percent at US$375 million.
The firm noted that the year’s numbers were helped by a 14-percent increase in sales volume, but that impact was blunted slightly due to a 5-percent drop in aluminium prices.
Alba’s Chief Executive Officer Ali Al Baqali elaborated upon the firm’s accomplishments in 2020 in a related press release.
“As I complete my first year as a full-time CEO, I am proud to say that our biggest achievement in 2020 was keeping our People safe – this is our number one priority. Despite all odds, we have forged ahead in 2020 and kept our cost lean by exceeding Project Titan – Phase IV Savings’ Target [of US$100 million] by achieving additional US$45 million savings – this was only made possible thanks to our nimble workforce. As we progress into 2021, we remain committed to Emerge Stronger as we advance towards Safety Excellence, capitalise on the lessons learnt in the pandemic year to meet AL HASSALAH objectives as well as have a Forward-Focus in respect to our ESG initiatives.”
Alba is one of the largest industrial companies in the Middle East and is the world’s biggest aluminium smelter outside the People’s Republic of China. Originally incorporated in 1968, the company is based in Bahrain and 84% 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. In 2020 Alba’s smelter produced 1,548,500 metric tons of primary aluminium.