25.11.04

25.11.2004: Meldung: Alcan, Alcoa, Government of Guinea Sign Protocol for Alumina Refinery

Alcan Inc. announced today that it has signed a protocol of negotiation with Alcoa World Alumina LLC (Alcoa) and the Government of the Republic of Guinea (Government) for the development of a 1.5 million tonne per year (mtpy) alumina refinery in the west African nation. This protocol sets out the items and framework for the alumina refinery project, which will be negotiated with the Government during the upcoming months as part of the memorandum of understanding between the parties, announced in May, 2004.

"Due to the significant quantity and high quality of the bauxite reserves, Guinea represents an attractive location for an alumina refinery and a potential value-maximizing growth opportunity for Alcan," said Michael Hanley, President and Chief Executive Officer of Alcan Bauxite and Alumina. "In addition, the long-standing involvement of Alcan and Alcoa in Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinee (CBG) places us in a uniquely favorable position to develop such a project," added Mr. Hanley.

Alcan and Alcoa (through subsidiaries) each hold a 45 percent interest in Halco (Mining) Inc. that in turn owns 51 percent of CBG, which currently mines bauxite for export in the Boke region of the country. The Government holds the remaining 49 percent of CBG. Alcan and Alcoa intend to secure bauxite supplies to the refinery from CBG, adding value to the enormous reserves that it holds in the Boke region.

Based on the current development plan and timetable, a final investment decision would be made following completion of a detailed feasibility study, within the next twelve months. Therefore, alumina production could be expected by 2008. The refinery, which would be operated by Alcoa, would be capable of expansion beyond the initial 1.5 mtpy level. Alcan and Alcoa would market their respective alumina off-take independently. The refinery would incorporate the latest technology and world-class operating and management systems. Alcan and Alcoa will continue to work closely with the Government on the roles and participation of CBG and the Government in this new project; as well as, continue to have discussions with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) concerning possible investment in the project.

Alcan is a multinational, market-driven company and global leader in aluminum and packaging, as well as aluminum recycling. With world-class operations in primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum as well as flexible and specialty packaging, aerospace applications, bauxite mining and alumina processing, today"s Alcan is well positioned to meet and exceed its customers" needs for innovative solutions and service. Alcan employs 88,000 people and has operating facilities in 58 countries and regions.

Statements made which describe the Company"s intentions, expectations or predictions may be "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of securities laws. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty; the Company"s actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements.


Source: ALCAN INC.
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