JISCO’s first shipment of alumina of 34,200 tons from Jamaica arrived on Feb. 5 in Lianyungang, a port in Jiangsu Province, marking that JISCO’s vertical integration strategy has finally come to fruition. JISCO, a steel and aluminum conglomerate, operates three potlines in Gansu Province with a total capacity of 1.75 million tons per annum but had long been handicapped by the lack of bauxite and alumina resources, until it bought Alpart for $299 million from U.C. Rusal in July 2016.
Located in the south of Jamaica, Alpart includes bauxite mines with an annual output of 4.9 million tons and three alumina production lines with a total annual capacity of 1.65 million tons, which were fully closed in 2009 as a result of the global financial crisis. One production line was restarted in October 2017 and the other two are expected to come on line in the first quarter of 2018. To further meet its needs for alumina, JISCO signed a non-binding agreement with the government of Jamaica in September 2017, planning to expand the capacity of the refinery to 2 million tons per annum by the end of 2020 and build another refinery with an annual capacity of 2 million tons in Jamaica.