Emirates Global Aluminium has announced that Al Taweelah alumina refinery in Abu Dhabi has produced one million tonnes of alumina since operations began in April.

Al Taweelah alumina refinery is now expected to reach sustained production at its nameplate capacity during the first half of 2020.

Al Taweelah alumina refinery is expected to produce some two million tonnes of alumina per year once full ramp-up is achieved, enough to meet 40 per cent of EGA’s alumina needs.

Abdulla Kalban, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of EGA, said: “We are pleased with the progress so far at Al Taweelah alumina refinery and we are on track to deliver a world-class ramp-up. Our preparations to operate Al Taweelah alumina refinery safely and efficiently began when the project was still on the drawing board. These plans are being effectively put into action by our operations team of global industry veterans and UAE Nationals specially trained for their roles in this new industrial activity for our country.”

EGA invested some $3.3 billion to build Al Taweelah alumina refinery. Construction took 72 million hours of work, equivalent to one person working for over 25,000 years.

The new plant 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 covers an area equivalent to 200 football fields, and contains enough steel to build seven Eiffel Towers.

Separately EGA began bauxite exports from its subsidiary Guinea Alumina Corporation in August.

Al Taweelah alumina refinery and Guinea Alumina Corporation expand EGA’s business upstream in the aluminium value chain and transform the UAE industrial champion into a global integrated aluminium giant. The projects create new revenue streams for EGA and secure the supply of natural resources the UAE’s aluminium industry needs at competitive prices.

In November EGA marked the 40th anniversary of its first aluminium production in the UAE. The expansion of EGA since production began in Jebel Ali in 1979 has made the UAE the fifth largest aluminium-producing nation in the world. The aluminium sector, with EGA at its heart, is today one of the country’s most important industries supporting 60,000 UAE jobs.