Russia’s Rusal Expects Record High Rates of Aluminum Shipments to US Due to Souring Demand

Brian Hesse, CEO of the regional branch of the Russian aluminum giant Rusal in North America said in an interview with Bloomberg that he expected to maintain regional growth rates due to a sharp increase in demand for the industrial metal, following a monthly record for aluminum supplies both to the United States and in North America as a whole that the company registered in March.

Hesse stated in a Thursday phone interview with the agency that his department delivered more than 25,000 tonnes of aluminum to North America in March, making it the best month regarding the level of shipments to the region. The company official added that he envisioned similar monthly figures for the rest of 2021 to set an annual record in North America.

“We’re coming off of Covid and I don’t think people expected things to be nearly as robust… We planned for that and we went out and got additional customers, so those same people are now out in the marketplace trying to pick up material frantically,” Hesse said.

According to the agency, ever since the US economy began recovering from the pandemic, the national market has had an increased demand for aluminum for some metal-made products, including window frames and recreational vehicles. However, despite this factor, certain concerns remain over the current situation, including the lack of decision of the current US cabinet on security tariffs on aluminum imports.

Besides, earlier this week US carmaker General Motors announced the temporal halt or extension of the suspension of production at several factories in North America due to the ongoing shortage of semiconductors.

However, Hesse said that all these concerns will be overshadowed by overall demand as the US economy gathers momentum during 2021.

Rusal is one of the world’s largest aluminum producers, accounting for 5.9 percent of output in 2019. The company is present in 20 countries and employs around 64,000 people.