Hosted by Emirates Aluminium (EMAL), the dinner was attended by the world’s leading figures in the aluminium industry, who are in Abu Dhabi for ‘Aluminium Week’.

Alcoa CEO Dr Klaus Kleinfeld also delivered a speech where he gave a brief overview of the history of aluminium before presenting some of its applications today.

About 300 aluminium executives attended the dinner set in the lavish gardens of the Emirates Palace Hotel. Companies represented included all the Gulf smelters, Rio Tinto Alcan, Kempe, SMS Meer and Fives Solios to name a few.

In his speech His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan said global demand for aluminium is predicted to grow steadily over the next decade.

He said the UAE’s low business costs, advanced transport infrastructure, and political and economic stability make it a place ideally suited to meet growing demand.

He said: “We take great pride in the achievements of our two UAE producers, Emal and Dubal, in becoming reliable sources of quality metal to customers around the world.”

He added that in particular, the investment in Emal will make it the world’s largest single-site aluminium producer by 2014 when it may produce as much as one-third of the aluminium manufactured in the Gulf region.