leaders from Alba, Dubal, Emal, Ma’aden, Qatalum and Sohar Aluminium to attend 4th MEED Middle East Aluminium Conference

Published March 10th, 2010 - 08:24 GMT

As the price of aluminium continues its quick recovery from the impact of the global crisis, with experts agreeing that the worst of the price slumps are over and producers beginning to dust off expansion plans, especially for downstream value-adding developments, MEED, the Middle East’s premier business intelligence provider, is preparing to host the 4th Middle East Aluminium Conference.

Entitled “Building a sustainable downstream industry”, the Conference, which will take place at the Dubai Marina Address Hotel on 16–17 March 2010, provides a comprehensive overview of the MENA aluminium production and processing sector and its place in the global market, with focus on building a sustainable downstream sector for the region’s industry.

Over the past ten years, GCC member states have begun implementing long-term strategies that aim to develop the region’s aluminium industry, and the region is now well positioned to be one of the world’s main aluminium producers. In 2000, the GCC share of global aluminium production was 1.8 million metric tonnes per annum. By 2008, this figure had risen to 2.2 million metric tonnes per annum (5.4% of global production), and it is expected to continue to increase – to 6 million metric tonnes per annum in 2015, and to 9 million metric tonnes per annum in 2020 (13% of global production).

According to Edmund O’Sullivan, Chairman at MEED Events, “There are huge opportunities for investments in the region to capitalise on the production of primary metal by the region’s major smelters. This year’s event is bigger than ever, with dedicated streams for the upstream production and smelter side of the industry, and for the downstream processing and fabrication sector. The Middle East Aluminium 2010 Conference presents an ideal opportunity for the local aluminium sector to forge strategic partnerships and alliances with international and regional partners that will help them expand and keep the Middle East at the cutting edge of aluminium sector growth.”

2010 is set to be an important year for aluminium production in the Middle East, with two of the biggest smelters in the world – Qatalum and Emal – preparing to ramp up production. CEOs of both projects will be on hand at the conference, offering attendees business-critical insight into their challenges and ambitions as they move from the project phase to full operations.

THE EVENT WILL FEATURE THE FIRST MIDDLE EAST ALUMINIUM LEADERSHIP AWARD, speakers and panel session participants will include ADBIC Vice President Metals, Juan Gomez-Cordobes; Sohar Aluminium CEO, Bruce Hall; CRU Principal Analyst, Marco Georgiou; Ma’aden Vice President Aluminium SBU and Project Management, Abdullah Busfar; Qatalum CEO, Jan-Arve Haugan; Garmco CEO, Adel Hamad; International Aluminium Institute Secretary General, Ron Knapp; and Alumco Managing Director, Samer Barakat.

In addition to project updates on Emal, Qatalum, Sohar Aluminium, and Ma’aden, a number of topics pertinent to the post-financial crisis aluminium industry will be presented by a world-class line-up of speakers representing the full value-chain. These include: Supply and demand in the global metals market; Capitalising on the potential of the Middle East; Future trends in the Middle East aluminium sector; Aluminium production in China; Global integration in the aluminium sector supply chain; Stimulating the development of technical aluminium products in the Middle East; and Lowering environmental impact and developing sustainable aluminium production.

The conference also includes a pre-conference masterclass on ‘Aluminium pricing in the Middle East’, which will take place on 15 March. The masterclass will give delegates the opportunity to develop a thorough understanding of local and foreign markets and the impact of the volatile cost of aluminium and raw materials on the regions aluminium industry, as well as giving them a strategic perspective on the development of successful market and pricing strategies for aluminium to maximise revenue and profitability.

The Middle East Aluminium 2010 Conference will bring together aluminium sector leaders and senior decision makers driving the sector’s growth, offering delegates a chance to network and engage with leading producers, fabricators, traders, end-users, energy providers, raw materials producers, financiers and consultants from across the region and beyond.

Says O’Sullivan, “Those attending the conference will have the chance to hear global experts build the business model for a sustainable downstream sector for the Middle East, and to do business with real decision makers from across the aluminium supply chain. The networking opportunities are also exceptional, and offer the chance to discover opportunities for investment in high value downstream production and get essential updates on global market conditions and pricing trends that impact business.”

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