Sales at Bahrain's Alba edge up 0.8% in second quarter

Owner of world's fourth-largest aluminum smelter says production unaffected by popular unrest
Sales at Bahrain's Alba edge up 0.8% in second quarter
By Reuters
Sun 17 Jul 2011 05:43 PM

Sales at Aluminium Bahrain (Alba), which owns the world's fourth-largest aluminum smelter, edged up 0.8 percent in the second quarter, the company said on Sunday.

Bahrain was rocked by months of anti-government protests which began in February. The government's martial law, imposed in March, was lifted on June 1.

Alba said sales were 228,357 tonnes in the second quarter, up from 226,539 tonnes in the prior-year period. It said production was unaffected by the unrest.

"Our sales and production figures prove that progress can be accomplished despite the prevalence of severe challenges," Alba Chief Executive Laurent Schmitt said in a statement. "We are confident that with the support of our loyal and dedicated employees, Alba is well-placed and remains optimistic with a positive outlook for the remainder of 2011."

For the first half of 2011, Alba said sales stood at 445,370 tonnes, up by 18,305 tonnes from the prior-year period. It cited a more focused marketing strategy and enhanced productivity for the increase.

In March, Alba's management said they were studying how to supply energy to a planned sixth production line that would boost its capacity by 400,000 tonnes annually. Overall, Alba produces more than 860,000 tonnes of aluminum annually.

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