Industry Trend Analysis - Bauxite: New Projects, Low-Cost Production In Asia To Drive Strong Growth - SEPT 2017

BMI View: Global bauxite production growth will pick up , supported by a strong project pipeline in Australia, new projects in Asia and Africa funded by Chinese aluminium producers and Indonesia ' s decision to relax the ban on ore exports. Asian countries such as Australia, Indonesia and India will drive global bauxite production growth.


Australia's bauxite sector will maintain steady output growth, supported by a solid project pipeline. Australia holds more than half of the 40 bauxite projects in our BMI Mines Database. Namely, Rio Tinto's expansion at the Weipa mine and the new Amrun project will drive growth. In 2016, Rio Tinto reported a 6.4% uptick in production at the Weipa mine and 21.3% increase in output at the Gove mine. While bauxite accounts for less than 5% of Australian mining value, the country is the global top producer, providing about 28.2% of global supply in 2017. Further, Australia will remain a top bauxite exporter to China, although will lose some market share over the coming quarters to returning Indonesian supply. In January, US firm Alcoa announced plans to increase bauxite exports from its operations in Western Australia after the first commercial shipment of bauxite from the company's Huntly mine took place in December 2016.

Australia, Indonesia To Drive Growth
Select Countries - Bauxite Production (mnt)
e/f = BMI estimate/forecast. Source: National Sources, USGS, BMI

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