China's city of Chaoyang scraps $3.4 billion alumina project

2 August 2018

The city of Chaoyang in China’s northeastern province of Liaoning says it has canceled a planned alumina project after a public consultation.

The plant was proposed to process bauxite ore into 10 million tonnes per year of alumina, a compound smelted into aluminum, and would have supplanted Norsk Hydro’s Alunorte project in Brazil as the world’s biggest alumina refinery.

The refinery was scrapped because of “differing opinions” from city residents on its environmental impact assessment, the Chaoyang government said on its website on Wednesday.

It had been earmarked for 23 billion yuan ($3.4 billion) of investment as a joint project between State Power Investment Corp’s (SPIC) aluminum arm, Jinzhou Port Co and the latter’s subsidiary, Jinguo Investment, according to a Chaoyang government statement on May 8, which also said the plant would directly create 2,000 jobs.

Jinzhou Port and SPIC did not immediately respond to emailed requests for comment.

Liaoning was home to China’s first aluminum smelter, at Fushun, which started up in the 1930s, but neither Liaoning or neighboring provinces Heilongjiang and Jilin currently have any alumina production, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics.