The Alcan/Rio Tinto global aluminium leader

Alcan today officially joined the Rio Tinto group following the successful offer for Alcan by a subsidiary of Rio Tinto.  The expanded aluminium product group, formed by the combination of Alcan and Rio Tinto’s existing aluminium assets, today became the new global leader in aluminium and will be known as Rio Tinto Alcan. The two CEOs, Rio Tinto’s Tom Albanese and Rio Tinto Alcan’s Dick Evans hosted special events at Rio Tinto Alcan’s Montreal headquarters and highlighted the opportunities created by bringing Alcan into the group, and the potential for continued strong growth in the aluminium sector. Similar employee events took place in Brisbane.

“I am proud to be here to welcome Alcan employees into the Rio Tinto family”, said Albanese. “They have built a company whose values we share. Rio Tinto’s strategy is to create shareholder value through investing in high quality, long life, low cost assets, and Alcan is a terrific addition to the Rio Tinto group. Together, we have a fantastic opportunity to build an even stronger global aluminium business through profitable and sustainable growth.”

“I am personally delighted to have the opportunity to be part of the new leader in the global aluminium industry, Rio Tinto Alcan,” said Evans. “With our attractive cost position, strong technology portfolio, complementary refining and smelting assets, and a strong growth pipeline, Rio Tinto Alcan’s mission is to create maximum sustainable value for Rio Tinto shareholders and to fulfil our mutual commitments to all of our stakeholders.”

Both Rio Tinto and Alcan have been recognised as leading stewards of the environment and the communities in which they operate, and in putting worker safety at the top of the priority list, and this philosophy would be maintained, stressed Albanese and Evans. “Rio Tinto Alcan will maintain commitments to excellence in health, safety and environmental performance, working together to ensure the economic, environmental, and social sustainability of the communities in which we operate,” said Evans.

Rio Tinto Alcan in Canada – Rio Tinto has been an investor in Canada for decades and currently has significant business activities in the Province of Québec (including QIT-Fer et Titane and Iron Ore Co of Canada), and the Northwest Territories (Diavik Diamond Mines). Rio Tinto is committed to investing in the Rio Tinto Alcan presence in Canada, particularly in the Provinces of Québec and British Columbia, in addition to locating the headquarters of the combined aluminium product group in Montréal. The product group’s aluminium smelting technology research and development headquarters will also be located in Québec.

Rio Tinto Alcan in Australia – Australia’s strengths in bauxite extraction, alumina refinery operations and project development will be enhanced by locating the combined global bauxite and alumina business and associated research and development activities in Brisbane. Rio Tinto already has a significant program of capacity growth in place following the recent announcement of the expansion at Rio Tinto’s Yarwun alumina refinery, and the ongoing bauxite capacity expansion at Weipa.

Rio Tinto Alcan in France – Rio Tinto has a strong, long-term commitment to France, which it believes provides an attractive environment in which to invest, conduct business and engage in world-leading research and development. Rio Tinto recognises France’s long history of expertise and research and development in aluminium technology, particularly ‘new cell’ smelting technology and is committed to building on French innovation in this area. Rio Tinto has had operations in France since 1988 through its Talc de Luzenac business based in Toulouse.