Manama: Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), owner of one of the world’s largest aluminium smelters, reported 88.6 per cent fall in first-quarter net profit as a result of a collapse in aluminium prices.
Alba’s net income for the three months to March 31 was BD4.2 million ($11.22m) it said in a statement. This compares with a profit of BD37.2m in the prior-year period.
Alba reported total sales of BD156.5m for the first quarter versus BD206.6m for the same quarter last year, a drop of 24pc.
However, volumes increased 1.4pc to 231,538 tonnes.
“The company’s top-line and earnings performance for the first quarter of 2016 were driven primarily by the collapse of all-in-aluminium prices,” the statement said.
Commenting on the results, Alba chairman Shaikh Daij bin Salman Al Khalifa said that despite weak market sentiment coupled with low London Metal Exchange prices, the company still recorded positive net income.
“Line 6 continues to gain momentum and we look forward to working with Bechtel who got recently appointed as EPCM contractor,” he added.
The company’s chief executive Tim Murray said it was able to “sustain its intrinsic financial performance in the face of very difficult market conditions thanks to the support of our dedicated workforce”.
“We will continue to drive operational performance and do more than necessary to bolster performance despite the challenging market conditions,” he said.
Alba in February cut its dividend for last year to free up cash for its expansion project, expected to cost $3.5 billion and raise its annual output to 1.45m tonnes.
The firm appointed Bechtel as the contractor for the Line 6 expansion in April.
The quarter ended March 31 also saw the launch of Project Titan – Phase II aimed at streamlining cash cost by $100 per tonne and boost production capacity to 1m tonnes per annum by end of next year.