Chalco bought a 23.4% share of NEPG from the Bank of China and an 11.9% share from China Zhongtou Trust and has based its purchasing decision on falling aluminium prices and a Q1 net loss.

Buying a share of NEPG will go some way to improving Chalco's financial position, bearing in mind that electricity accounts for 45% of aluminium production costs.

NEPG is the largest company in the Ningxia Autonomous Region in China's north west. It operates a number of solar and wind power farms and runs two coal mines. The company has a combined power output of 4.8 million kW and a coal ouput of 10Mt/yr.