Aluminium Bahrain, which owns the world's fourth-largest aluminium smelter, said on Monday it hired BNP Paribas to advise on financing options for a proposed $2.5bn expansion plan to add a sixth production line.
Alba has said the new line - which will add 400,000 tonnes annual capacity to its current production of 881,000 tonnes a year - could be completed by early 2015.
A project feasibility study is expected to start at the end of the year, the Bahraini firm said in a statement, adding it choose BNP for its "strong presence in Bahrain along with extensive experience with the aluminium sector."
Alba's last major expansion took place in 2005 when it added a fifth potline at a cost of $1.7bn.
Bahrain's state-run energy supplier raised Alba's gas supply costs by $0.75 per million British thermal units (mmbtu) to $2.25/mmbtu on January 1, but Alba still enjoys cheaper fuel than its competitors outside the Gulf.For all the latest banking and finance news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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