Hindalco looks to export alumina from Odisha unit
Mumbai: Hindalco Industries Ltd is looking at exporting the extra alumina that its unit Utkal Alumina International Ltd produces, as it seeks to spur growth, chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla said on Wednesday.
“We believe that (export of alumina) would be an attractive proposition and is something that the company is studying at this point in time,” Birla told shareholders at Hindalco’s 58th annual general meeting (AGM).
According to studies, roughly two tonnes of alumina, which is produced from the refining of bauxite, is required to produce one tonne of aluminium.
In financial year 2016-17, while Hindalco’s aluminium production was 1.3 million tonnes (mt), its alumina production was at 2.9 mt, which, after an ongoing de-bottlenecking exercise at the Utkal refinery is completed, is only likely to go up.
At present, state-owned National Aluminium Co. Ltd (Nalco) is the largest exporter of alumina in the country.
Keeping aside alumina, exports have anyway been a major cog in the wheel for Hindalco’s revenue growth in recent years.
In financial year 2016-17, for instance, while the company’s domestic sales fell 2.7% to Rs23,024 crore, its exports jumped 25.6% to Rs15,921 crore, accounting for over 40% of the company’s standalone sales.
Birla said one of the main themes for the company during the current financial year would be reduction of debt on its balance sheet.
The company expects a Rs800 crore decline in its interest expenses in financial year 2017-18.