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February 17, 2014
17:09 EDTAAAlcoa to close smelter, rolling mills in Australia, sees $250M-$270M in charges
Alcoa announced it will permanently close its Point Henry aluminum smelter and two rolling mills in Australia. The smelter and an adjacent rolling mill are located in Geelong, Victoria. The second mill and a recycling facility are located in Yennora, New South Wales. The smelter will close in August and the rolling mills by the end of 2014. The company said, "The Point Henry smelter was placed under strategic review in February 2012 due to challenging market conditions. A comprehensive review found that the 50-year-old smelter has no prospect of becoming financially viable. The two rolling mills serve the domestic and Asian can sheet markets which have been impacted by excess capacity. Alcoa of Australia operates the smelter where approximately 500 employees work. Alcoa Inc. operates the rolling mills which employ about 480 people." The Anglesea coal mine and power station that currently supplies approximately 40 percent of the power needs for the Point Henry smelter has the potential to operate as a stand-alone facility after the smelter closes. Alcoa of Australia will actively seek a buyer for the facility. Total 2014 restructuring-related charges associated with the closures outlined above are expected to be between $250M-$270M after-tax and non-controlling interest, or 22c-25c per share, of which approximately 60% would be recorded in Q1. Cash costs during 2014 are expected to total approximately $160M. The closures will reduce Alcoa’s global smelting capacity by 190,000 metric tons and reduce Alcoa’s can sheet capacity by 200,000 metric tons. Including the closure of the Point Henry smelter, Alcoa has announced closures or curtailments representing 551,000 metric tons of smelting capacity, exceeding the 460,000 metric tons placed under review in May 2013. Once the Point Henry closure is complete, Alcoa will have total smelting operating capacity of approximately 3,760,000 metric tons, with approximately 655,000 metric tons, or 17 percent, of high cost capacity offline.
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