Newly-released shipping data shows that Russia’s UC Rusal has shipped the first bauxite ore from its operations in West Africa in almost a month.
Data from Refinitiv indicates that an ore transport ship with ties to Rusal loaded a larger ore ship that left Kamsar in Guinea on Tuesday.
Although sanctions against Russian businesses have thrown a wrench in supply chains, Rusal continues to operate its bauxite mining, alumina refining, and aluminium smelting businesses. The firm has yet to be directly named as a target for sanctions, but founder and major shareholder Oleg Deripaska has found himself under sanction due to his relationship with Vladimir Putin.
The shipment, presumably from the Dian-Dian mines inland, is the first since 12 March. Meanwhile, Rusal’s Kindia mine hasn’t shipped bauxite ore since late February.
The bauxite ore harvested at Rusal’s mines in Guinea generally fuel operations at Aughinish alumina refinery in Ireland. The alumina refinery has been put in a precarious position due to the loss of Australia and Rio Tinto’s mines to Rusal, as both the country and the firm have opted to suspend sales to Russian businesses.
Rusal did not offer a comment on the situation when reached by Reuters earlier this week.