Construction milestone hit on $3.3bn Abu Dhabi alumina refinery

Emirates Global Aluminium completes commissioning of first major section of its alumina refinery at Al Taweelah in Abu Dhabi
Construction milestone hit on $3.3bn Abu Dhabi alumina refinery
Emirates Global Aluminium is the largest industrial company in the UAE outside oil and gas.
By Sam Bridge
Wed 12 Dec 2018 01:53 PM

Emirates Global Aluminium, the largest industrial company in the UAE outside oil and gas, on Wednesday announced the completion of commissioning of the first major section of its under-construction alumina refinery at Al Taweelah in Abu Dhabi.

The completion of commissioning - testing equipment and systems before start-up - of the calcination section makes it the first of the four major sections of Al Taweelah alumina refinery to be ready for production.

The commissioning of the other sections of Al Taweelah alumina refinery is ongoing and first alumina is expected during the first half of 2019, the company said in a statement.

Al Taweelah alumina refinery contains some 9,500 instruments, 222 tanks, enough piping to stretch from Abu Dhabi to Muscat, and cabling that would reach from Abu Dhabi to Cairo, it said, adding that commissioning the entire plant requires 82,500 separate actions to be completed.

The calcination section alone contains more than 1,700 instruments and over 100 motors.

Abdulla Kalban, managing director and CEO of EGA, said: “Commissioning is the last stage of this massive project to develop EGA’s and the UAE’s first alumina refinery. The safe completion of commissioning of the calcination section is an important milestone.”

Al Taweelah alumina refinery is the first alumina refinery to be built in the UAE and only the second in the Middle East.

Alumina is the feedstock for aluminium smelters. Once production is fully ramped-up, Al Taweelah alumina refinery is expected to produce 2 million tonnes of alumina per year and meet 40 percent of EGA’s alumina requirements, replacing some imports.

The total budgeted project cost of Al Taweelah alumina refinery is $3.3 billion.

EGA is also developing a bauxite mine and associated export facilities in the Republic of Guinea in West Africa. Bauxite is the ore from which aluminium is derived and is the feedstock for alumina refineries.

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