On February 22, according to four people familiar with the matter, Kazakhstan’s number one miner, Eurasia Resources Group (ERG), has begun exporting alumina from Kazakhstan to China’s Xinjiang region, and the company is trying to lower its main buyer, Rusal ( Rusal) dependence.
In China, the world's largest aluminum producer, it is rare to buy raw materials for aluminum from Kazakhstan. According to China Customs data, in 2017 or 2018, China did not import any alumina from Central Asian countries.
Another source said that ERG, which has an annual output of 1.5 million tons of alumina, increased its efforts to find new customers last year after the United States said it would impose sanctions on RUSAL.
RUSAL purchased two-thirds of the alumina from ERG.
It added that the number of shipments to China was recently part of the amount previously designated for supply to Rusal.
The remaining alumina of ERG will flow into its smelter in Pavlodar, northeastern Kazakhstan.
In January of this year, the United States lifted sanctions against RUSAL, and the contract between ERG and RUSAL will expire at the end of this year.
ERG executives said last year that they would reduce the company's dependence on Russian aluminum sales of alumina.