Japan’s aluminium firm UACJ announced this week that it is planning to spend US$488 million in the United States and the Kingdom of Thailand in order to boost its overseas rolled aluminium capacity by forty percent.
According to the company’s projections, the capex project in question will boost overseas capacity to 700,000 metric tons, which is roughly the same capacity as its domestic production level. Improvements will be carried out at Rayong Works in Thailand and Tri-Arrows Aluminum in Kentucky.
Rayong Works is to receive a casting line consisting of casting equipment, a scrap-melting furnace, and a well furnace, a scalper, heating furnace, a cold-rolling mill, a surface treatment and coating line, slitter, and assorted necessary buildings. Such improvements would cost US$320 million and boost production to 320 thousand tons per annum by June 2019. UACJ expects to realize an EBITDA increase in US$120 million between the current fiscal year and FY 2021.
Tri-Arrows is scheduled to receive a casting line, including melting equipment for scrap material, and a cold-rolling mill. Including a US$50 million investment announced for the facility last year, the total capex at the Kentucky facility will be US$160 million. The casting mill is to come online in July 2018, while the cold-rolling mill is to begin operating in April 2019. Once both facilities are online, UACJ expects to realize a boost in EBITDA of US$5 million between now and FY 2021.
UACJ is the world’s third largest producer of rolled aluminium and is the only Japanese firm with significant rolled aluminium capacity overseas. However, even after planned increases are carried out, it will still have less than half the capacity of Novelis, the world’s leader.
UACJ began in 2013 when Japan’s Furukawa-Sky Aluminum and Sumitomo Light Metal Industries integrated their business operations.