Alcoa to Boost Stake in Eklem to Become Biggest Aluminum Producer

Company now has capacity to produce 4.7 million metric tons

Alcoa said on Dec. 22 it had agreed to an equity swap that would boost its stake in Sweden's Elkem Aluminum and make it the sector's largest manufacturer. Alcoa said it struck a deal with Norweigan Orkla ASA to exchange assets to get 100% of the Swedish firm.

Alcoa will receive Orkla's 50% stake in Elkem Aluminum while Orkla will receive Alcoa's 45% stake in the processing operation of U.S.-based maker SAPA. The transaction is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2009.

"The addition of these assets increases Alcoa's global smelting capacity to more than 4.7 million metric tons, making Alcoa the world's largest primary aluminum producer," Alcoa said. The company would overtake the current world leader, Rusal of Russia.

Agence France-Presse 2008

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