Aluminum prices soar as Australia bans alumina exports to Russia
03/23/2022 // Mary Villareal // Views

The ban on alumina exports to Russia has added more pressure on aluminum giant United Co. Rusal International PJSC.

Moscow-based Rusal shares dropped after Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that the country is immediately banning exports. Australia supplies almost 20 percent of Russia's alumina, which is a key ingredient for producing aluminum. Its exports of aluminum ores, including bauxite, have also been prohibited.

Aluminum has not been targeted by sanction, but Rusal, which needs bauxite and alumina to feed its plants, faces disruptions to its supply chains as Russia becomes isolated from the world.

"It's a critical input into weaponry, including guns, ammunition and missiles. Our decision here should say very clearly that to all countries, all companies operating in Australia, we are watching these things very, very carefully," Morrison said in a press conference.

He also said the ban demonstrated Australia's "absolute commitment to holding the Putin regime to account."

Aluminum, which is used in everything from cans to airplanes to window frames, was already running low before the Ukraine invasion sent markets into a frenzy.

Morrison also said a ship that is due to dock and collect a load of alumina bound for Russia would not deliver its cargo. Russia remains to be a key supplier of aluminum to markets including Turkey, China and Japan, and the ban threatens to add more inflationary pressures to these economies.

In other parts of the globe, aluminum prices jumped as much as 5.7 percent to $3,574 per ton and closed at $3,521 on the London Metal Exchange. Prices also hit a record earlier in the month, and are already up 25 percent this year. Rusal's shares, meanwhile, dropped 5.4 percent in Hong Kong.


Rusal entitled to production

Rusal said in a statement that it was evaluating the impact of Australia's ban. However, it does own a 20 percent stake in Queensland Alumina Ltd., which is operated by Rio Tinto Group. This makes them entitled to the same proportion of production. (Related: Aluminum and nickel, other commodity prices rise following Russia's move on Ukraine.)

It does remain likely for Rio to continue supplying the metal to Rusal for now, but it will have to stop when the government directly prohibits it.

Meanwhile, Rio said that it would comply with all of Canberra's directions, reiterating that it was in the process of terminating its commercial relationships with Russian businesses. Rio plans to stop supplying bauxite to and buying alumina from Rusal's Aughinish plant in Ireland.

Rusal also cut its output from its Nikolaev alumina refinery in Ukraine due to logistical issues arising from the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Whether or not the company will cut aluminum output will depend on the volumes of its inventories. Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreaks in China are also disrupting supplies of the metal, adding even more pressure on global prices.

Australia's ban will apply to "all relevant shipments" to Russia. While it is common practice for alumina producers to swap cargoes with other suppliers in different locations to save on freight costs, it remains unclear whether or not Rusal will be able to get around the prohibition by doing this with shipments from its Queensland plant. (Related: Russia’s red line: Moscow not about to allow Ukraine to join NATO as World War III hangs in the balance.)

Gavin Wendt, a senior resources analyst at the consultancy Mine Life Pty., said in an email that the spirit of the sanctions suggests that Rusal will not be allowed to profit from alumina sales at all, although it remains unclear in the current wording.

Australia also made it clear where its allegiance lies: It said that it would provide additional support to help Ukraine's government to beat Russia and give support to those impacted by violence.

Morrison's administration also announced a $21 million support package of defensive military assistance for Ukraine and another $30 million in emergency humanitarian aid.

Follow for more updates involving the Russia-Ukraine crisis.

Watch the video below to know more about the effects of supply crisis.

This video is from the Dr William Mount channel on

More related stories:

Russia recognizes breakaway republics of Ukraine as U.S. tries to exploit the region for global war.

Russia-Ukraine crisis will put even more strain on the global food supply, driving up prices of wheat and corn around the world.

Food insecurity worsening already following Russian invasion of Ukraine, as countries begin withholding exports and hoarding commodities.

Putin declares two Ukraine regions "independent republics," sends in "peacekeeping" troops.

Western media is literally peddling Neo-Nazi propaganda to prompt war between Russia and Ukraine.

Sources include:

Take Action:
Support Natural News by linking to this article from your website.
Permalink to this article:
Embed article link:
Reprinting this article:
Non-commercial use is permitted with credit to (including a clickable link).
Please contact us for more information.
Free Email Alerts
Get independent news alerts on natural cures, food lab tests, cannabis medicine, science, robotics, drones, privacy and more.
App Store
Android App
eTrust Pro Certified

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2022 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

This site uses cookies
Natural News uses cookies to improve your experience on our site. By using this site, you agree to our privacy policy.
Learn More
Get 100% real, uncensored news delivered straight to your inbox
You can unsubscribe at any time. Your email privacy is completely protected.