Bechtel signs Aluminium Bahrain agreement

17 December 2017
US firm will explore further growth opportunities for the under construction Line 6 expansion project

Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) has signed a memorandum of understanding US-based Bechtel to explore further opportunities of growth with its Line 6 Expansion Project.

Bechtel is already the engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) contractor for the Line 6 expansion project.

Bechtel won the engineering, procurement and construction management for the Line 6 expansion scheme in April 2016. US-based GE and Turkey’s Gama Power is working on Power Station 5 that will support the expansion, and Germany’s Siemens is completing on the power distribution system contract.

Expected to start metal production in early 2019, the $3bn Line 6 scheme will boost annual production by 540,000 tonnes upon its full ramp-up, bringing Alba’s total production capacity to 1.5 million tonnes a year (t/y), making it the world’s largest single-site aluminium smelter.

The Alba expansion and other major projects are helping drive economic growth in Bahrain. The kingdom’s real economic growth reached an annual pace of 3.4 per cent for the first half of this year, which is an improvement on the 3.2 per cent achieved during 2016 as a whole, according to the latest Bahrain Economic Quarterly published by Bahrain’s Economic Development Board (EDB) in November.

Non-oil GDP growth performed more strongly and quickened during the first half of this year to 4.7 per cent, from 4 per cent for the whole of 2016.

The EDB says the non-oil growth was almost entirely due to activity in the private sector, underscoring the strength of structural and counter-cyclical growth drivers in the Bahraini economy.

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