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Brazil's Albras aluminum smelter shuts down 25% of capacity due to fire

Highlights

Albras smelter shuts one production line due to transformer fire: Hydro

Other three production lines running 'as normal': Hydro

Sao Paulo — Brazilian primary aluminum smelter Albras, located in the northern state of Para, is currently operating only three of its four production lines due to a electrical transformer fire that started Friday morning, according to Hydro, which owns a 51% stake in the facility.

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"It remains too early to assess financial implications from the incident as well as timing for restart," said Hydro, emphasizing that the three other lines were not affected "and are running as normal."

Earlier in 2020, S&P Global Platts was told by sources close to the matter that the smelter was running at about 95% of its 460,000 mt/year capacity and was expected to reach 100% by mid-year.

The smelter was forced to reduce its output in April 2018 due to a government embargo on the neighboring Alunorte alumina refinery.

Alunorte, which is also controlled by Hydro, was Albras' sole alumina supplier.

Although there was no immediate impact on primary aluminum pricing, there could be consequences if the curtailment persists, as some consumers reported lower availability at CBA's 450,000 mt/year smelter in San Paulo State this week. Albras and CBA are the only active primary aluminum producers in Brazil.