Global Aluminium Deficit to Rise to 1.8 MMT in 2018: Rusal’s Mukhamedshin

Global Aluminium Deficit to Rise to 1.8 MMT in 2018: Rusal’s Mukhamedshin

The second-largest aluminium producer on Earth expects a global aluminium deficit as large as 1.8 million metric tons next year, with the widening divergence between supply and demand due to a drop in output from the People’s Republic of China.

UC Rusal’s Deputy Chief Executive Oleg Mukhamedshin predicted the rise from this year’s 1.3 million metric ton shortfall when speaking to reporters in Moscow on Wednesday. He went on to say that, despite the increased deficit, prices will likely stay in the neighborhood of US$1,900 per metric ton.

Mukhamedshin also revealed that the Russian firm is weighing the placement of another tranche of Panda bonds if the market for it materialized. This placement would be on the heels of Rusal’s historic first tranche this year, which represented the first time a foreign firm with operations outside of China entered the Chinese bond market. That first tranche totaled CN¥1 billion (US$145 million) and was earmarked for working capital.

According to Mukhamedshin, new talks on the subject may commence this fall, as the current Panda bond program expires in early 2018. Rusal is already in talks with Sberbank in an effort at refinancing its debt with the bank, he said, as the company US$2.4 billion in 2020 and another US$1.9 billion the following year.

Mukhamedshin also addressed rumors arising last month that the firm was considering leaving Euronext in favor of a technical listing at London’s exchange, telling reporters that “we have not taken any new decisions yet” and going on to say that Rusal was not now considering the placement of new shares.

“We have a listing in Hong Kong, on Moscow Exchange and on Euronext in Paris. The other question is that the main liquidity is being divided between Hong Kong and Moscow. It is not a secret that there is no active (Rusal share) trade in Paris. But I can not say anything new yet,” he concluded.