The expansion of its Yeongju and Ulsan plants increases the company’s production capacity in the region by more than 50% to approximately 1m metric tons of aluminium sheet per year.

The company began the expansion of its aluminium rolling and recycling facilities in 2011 to meet the rising demand for flat rolled aluminium in high value-added products in the Asian market such as consumer electronics. The expansion includes a hot rolling finishing mill, cold rolling mill, pusher furnace, high-speed slitter and annealing furnaces, in addition to the previously commissioned fully-integrated recycling center at Yeongju.

The demand for aluminium in the Asian automotive market is expected to exceed the 25% compound annual growth rate projected globally over the next five years, as more auto manufacturers move to build lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles. Novelis says its expansion in South Korea will help it meet this growing market.

The company opened its aluminium recycling and casting center at its Yeongju facility in October 2012. This new operation has the capacity to produce 265,000 tons of sheet ingot. The Yeongju Recycling Center is one of a series of recycling and casting expansion projects launched by Novelis over the past two years to increase its recycling and casting capacity to 2.1m tons globally by 2015.

Earlier this year Novelis announced the commercial availability of what it says is the industry’s first independently certified, high-recycled content aluminium designed specifically for the beverage can market. With a minimum of 90% recycled aluminium, the Novelis evercan aluminium beverage can body sheet allows beverage companies to deliver soft drinks, beer and other beverages in a low-carbon footprint consumer package, the company says.