Alba’s top-line were driven in by higher LME prices (61% YoY in Q2 2021 and 41% YoY in H1 2021) and partially offset by lower Sales’ volume (a drop of 1% YoY in Q2 2021 and 3% YoY in H1 2021) while the bottom-line for Q2 and H1 2021 was driven by higher top-line and partially impacted by higher Selling and Distribution Expenses.
Consumption: Strong Rebound for Global Demand Underpinned by V-Shape Economic Recovery (+12% YoY)
- Stimulus packages by Governments across the globe [US$1.2 trillion in US over 8-year period to revive infrastructure and transition to a greener economy; €750 billion recovery program launched by EU] translated in strong metal consumption in key markets.
- Strong come-back for Aluminium consumption in North America (+49% YoY) with manufacturing activity reaching an all-time high.
- Rebound in World ex-China consumption (+33% YoY) and Europe’s +29% YoY owing to strong market recovery.
- Middle East demand up by 17% YoY, a double-digit increase, owing to higher demand in UAE.
- Chinese market is no longer the bullish driver it used to be with Chinese authorities urging SHFE futures exchange to avoid excessive speculation. Chinese consumption almost flat (+1% YoY).
Production: Higher Metal Demand Accelerate Supply Growth (+7% YoY)
- An all-high record smelting margins enhanced higher capacity utilization rates as smelters are back to normal production after COVID-19.
- Strong come-back for SHFE price (highest level in 13 years) has boosted Chinese production with +9% YoY.
- North America supply down by 5,000 MT (1,032 Kt in 2Q20 1,027 Kt in 2Q21) owing to the gradual closure of Alcoa’s Ferndale smelter.
- Primary supply in GCC almost flat owing to 2% YoY supply cuts in UAE.
- LME inventories at ~1.597 million MT as of 30 June 2021 (down by 16% YoY) and LME-cash averaged US$2,399/MT (61% YoY) in Q2 2021.
Alba Safety Highlights
- Plant Safety: 2 Safety Campaigns were launched: ‘The Right Choice’ on 05 Apr’21 and first ESG Campaign ‘Achieving the Balance’ by mid-June 2021.
- > 99% of Alba employees vaccinated.
- To ensure its People’s Safety, random rapid tests were carried-out on a daily basis at the Company’s gates to Alba employees and contractors’ personnel; only vaccinated guests were allowed on Alba premises.
- Recipient of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents Gold Award for 8th consecutive year in a row.
- Recipient of ISO 22301:2012 certification for Business Continuity Management System (BCMS).
- Alba achieved 13 million safe working-hours w/o LTI on 29 Jun’21.
Alba Major Operational Highlightsin Q2 2021
- Sales’ volume topped 388,149 metric tonnes (MT) - down by 1% YoY while Production reached 391,954 MT, up by 3.5% YoY.
- Value Added Sales averaged 65% of the total shipments (vs. 62% in 1Q21).
- Alba’s achieved savings through AL-HASSALAH initiative amounted US$56 million (versus US$70 million target by year-end 2021).
- Recipient of Best Corporate Governance Award in Bahrain by Ethical Boardroom for 2021.
- Natural gas price set at US$3.75/MMBTU till 31 March 2022.
- Environmental Conservation Project -Spent Pot Lining (SPL) Treatment Plant in progress (>91%).
2021 Alba Priorities
- Evolve Towards Safety Excellence & Keep Alba’s Human Capital Safe Amidst COVID-19.
- Support the Government’s Initiatives & aim is to have 100% vaccinated workforce.
- Meet 2021 Production Target of 1,540,000 metric tonnes & Deliver on AL HASSALAH Savings’ Target of US$70 Million by 2021-end.
- Screen Potential Upstream Opportunities to Secure 1/3 Alumina Requirements & Continue Dialogue with Hangzhou Jinjiang Group Co. Ltd.
- Capitalise on Aluminium Stewardship Initiative and Ecovadis Certifications to Penetrate New Markets & Increase VAP Sales.
- Complete Environmental Conservation Project, 1stof its Kind in the Region, Spent Pot Lining Treatment (SPL) Plant.
- Focus on Green and Sustainable Initiatives.
- Release Alba’s Fifth Edition of Sustainability Report after Quality Assurance.
Commenting on Alba’s financial performance for the first half of 2021, the Chairman of Alba’s Board of Directors, Shaikh Daij Bin Salman Bin Daij Al Khalifa stated:
“We continued with the strong momentum we’ve started in the first quarter of 2021, and this has led us to set all-time records in our performance:
- We have achieved highest-ever production of 773,887 metric tonnes while Value Added Sales reached new heights with 472,323 metric tonnes (translating into 64% of our Sales). These new precedents were made possible thanks to Line 6 Expansion Project.
- EBITDA margin has beaten the record we have achieved in Q1 2021 and set a new benchmark with 33% (versus 29.8% in Q1 2021).
- Our Profit topped new peak for the first 6-months of 2021 with US$385 million, up by 1,461% YoY.
Our business performance is directly correlated to our Safety mindset as we truly believe that productivity and Safety are mutually inclusive. Today, we have achieved more than 14 million safe-working hours without LTI.”
Alba’s Chief Executive Officer, Ali Al Baqali, added:
Despite the COVID-19 challenge and global logistics’ issue, Alba has set new benchmarks in its 5 decades of commercial operations: higher production, higher EBITDA and higher Net Profit ever achieved in 6-months period. This unparalleled operational and financial performance is defined by our strong results rather than our attributes. Our results speak louder than words and this strong comeback on all fronts would not have been made possible without the resilience of our workforce and for ‘Thinking First, Safety Always.”
Alba Management will hold a conference call on Monday 02 August 2021 at 3 PM Bahrain Time to discuss its financial and operational performance for Q2 and H1 2021, outline the Company's priorities for 2021 as well as provide an update on the current market conditions and outlook for 2021.
About Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C. (Alba)
Alba is the world’s largest aluminium smelter ex-China with a production of more than 1.548 million metric tonnes per annum (mtpa) (2020). With a dual listing on Bahrain Bourse and London Stock Exchange, the Company’s shareholders are Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company B.S.C. © (69.38%), SABIC Industrial Investment Company (SIIC) (20.62%) and General Public (10%).
In addition to molten metal, our diverse Value-Added Product (VAP) portfolio includes Foundry grade re-melt products (T-Ingots, Standard Ingots and Properzi Bars), Rolling Ingots (Slabs), Extrusion Ingots (Billets) and Unalloyed P1020 re-melt products. Around 79% of our products - from customised alloys to a variety of surface finishes -- are exported to more than 150 global customers through our sales offices in Europe, Asia, Singapore, and subsidiary office in the U.S.
Alba Campus comprises six Reduction Lines, three Power Stations, four Casthouses, four Carbon Plants along with other ancillary facilities. In addition to primary aluminium production, we also produce 530,000 mtpa of high-quality calcined petroleum coke at our own dedicated Coke Calcining Plant. Alba also yields 9.5 million cubic metres of potable water per annum from its dedicated seawater desalination plant.
Alba has carved an enviable reputation in Safety, Environment and Health, Sustainability and Quality Management. It is one of the few smelters in the world to have achieved Zero Lost Time Injuries (LTI) in 2019. Alba was recognized during 2020 with five categories of National Safety Council (NSC) awards - USA and Gold Medal Health and Safety Award from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) – UK. Alba was also awarded with the International Safety Award from British Safety Council (BSC) – UK in March 2021.
Alba brings value to its customers with the many globally-recognised certifications such as ISO 9001, ISO 45001, ISO 14001 and ISO 27001. Moreover, the Company attained the significant Automotive Quality Management System - IATF 16949 in 2018 and, Bronze Medal by EcoVadis and Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) Performance Certification in 2020.
Alba is committed to fostering greater sustainability across all our operations. In line with its CSR initiatives, Alba set-up the Region’s first-of-its-kind Spent Pot Lining (SPL) Treatment Plant in cooperation with Bahrain’s Supreme Council for Environment in 2019 to create a sustainable solution for the treatment of SPL with zero-waste. In 2020, Alba inaugurated its Fish Farm Project in collaboration with the Bahrain National Guard Consumer Association, thus boosting the Kingdom’s aquaculture and enriching the biodiversity around Alba’s operations.
Starting out in 1971 as a 120,000 mtpa smelter, Alba has continually delivered value to its customers, shareholders, and stakeholders. As we mark the Golden Jubilee of operations in 2021, we aspire to be more productive, innovative, and sustainable. For more information on Alba, please visit www.albasmelter.com
Alba External Grievance Mechanism
Alba’s External Grievance Mechanism receives and facilitates the resolution of any affected communities’ concerns and grievances about Alba’s Environment and Social (E&S) performance. External grievances about Alba’s E&S performance can be logged via the Alba Integrity Line - an independently operated confidential reporting hotline in multiple languages - via a toll-free phone system or via the intranet 24 hours a day,
Alba’s External Grievance Mechanism is in line with Performance Standards of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a World Bank affiliated lending organisation.
Alba Response to COVID-19 Pandemic
2020 was a year like no other and as one of Bahrain’s leading industrial companies, Alba’s response strategy to COVID-19 was initiated since January 2020 and was based on the guidelines of Bahrain National Taskforce for Combating Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Alba’s Executive team adapted an interactive approach from creating personal video messages, visiting shop-floor areas and engaging in virtual daily briefings with its Healthcare Centre team. Alba Management announced work-from-home and reduced working-hours where applicable especially for the female staff, and actioned plant-wide temperature checks for all shifts; social distancing protocols in offices, shop-floor areas and transport vehicles; frequent sanitization of all operational and non-operational areas; distribution of protective kits; installation of hand sanitizer dispensers across the Company and posted multilingual posters in various areas.
Despite COVID-19 outbreak, Alba continued to maintain stable operations thanks to its Business Continuity Plan and Emergency Preparedness Plan and sent-out few Letters of Assurance on Safe operations at Alba to all its stakeholders (customers, suppliers, and regulators) during 2020.
Alba, the Safety of our people – employees and contractors’ workers – always comes First. Whilst we continue to follow COVID-19 measures at all times, we remain focused on Safety, Efficient Operations and Lean Cost Structure.
For further details, please contact:
Director, Investor Relations, Insurance & Corporate Secretary
Investor Relations Department
Tel: (973) 1783 5100
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© Press Release 2021