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Investment Will Significantly Reduce Costs at Facility
Alcoa World Alumina and Chemicals (AWAC) -- a global alliance
between Alcoa Inc. and WMC, Ltd. -- and the Government of Jamaica
today announced that they have reached an agreement to invest
$115 million to expand the Jamalco alumina refinery in Clarendon,
Jamalco is a 50/50 relationship between AWAC and the Government of
Jamaica with AWAC as the managing partner. The Government of Jamaica
also announced the removal of the 28-year-old levy on bauxite from
Jamalco, effective in 2003 when the expansion is expected to be
The expansion will increase the capacity of the Jamalco refinery
by 25% making it a 1.25 million metric tons per year refinery. The
removal of the levy along with the expansion will lower costs at
Jamalco by approximately 30%.
"Our partnership with the Government of Jamaica has grown stronger
over the past 43 years," said Alcoa Chairman and CEO Alain Belda. "We
are committed to working toward making the Jamalco operation a world
class and globally competitive facility. The reduced costs to be
achieved from the introduction of new technologies, lower raw
materials costs and improved efficiencies will bring Jamalco in line
with our other low cost facilities in the refinery system."
The Prime Minister of Jamaica, Rt. Hon. P.J. Patterson responded,
"Looking back as we have today over the past 43 years of Alcoa's
involvement in Jamaica, the 30 years of existence of this refinery,
and the platform which the industry provided for transforming our
economy, we anticipate that Alcoa's already significant contribution
to the long-term development of Jamaica will continue. We expect also
that its outstanding record of support for community development in
Clarendon will be maintained. Its relationship with the Government has
been critical to these successes. This expansion which is to take
place provides further evidence of how this relationship can work for
the good of Jamaica and the businesses located here."
Alcoa began operations in Jamaica more than 40 years ago with
bauxite mining. In 1972 the company began alumina refining there, and
in 1988 it completed an agreement that made the Government of Jamaica
a 50% owner of the operations.
Alcoa is the world's leading producer of primary aluminum,
fabricated aluminum and alumina, and is active in all major aspects of
the industry. Alcoa's aluminum products and components are used
worldwide in aircraft, automobiles, beverage cans, buildings,
chemicals, sports and recreation and in a wide variety of industrial
and consumer applications, including such Alcoa consumer brands as
Alcoa(R) wheels, Reynolds Wrap(R) aluminum foil, and Baco(R) household
wraps. Among its related businesses are precision castings, vinyl
siding, closures, and electrical distribution systems for cars and
trucks. The company has 129,000 employees in 38 countries.
Alcoa Inc. (NYSE:AA)
Certain statements relate to future events and expectations and as
such constitute forward-looking statements involving known and unknown
risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results,
performance or achievements of Alcoa to be different from those
expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Important
factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from
those in the forward-looking statements include other risk factors
summarized in Alcoa's SEC reports.