NEW YORK - Aluminum giant Alcoa said Friday that it is weighing more cutbacks in its smelting and refining operations worldwide in the face of weak prices.
Alcoa, which has been paring operations for more than a year, said it would review over the next year 500,000 tons of smelting capacity and 2.8 million tons of refining capacity "for possible curtailment or divestiture."
That could turn into a 14% cut in the company's global smelting capacity and 16% of its refining capacity.
Alco said currently 19% of its smelting capacity of 4.17 million tons sits idle.
Alcoa continues to take decisive action, transforming its upstream portfolio to create a lower cost, globally competitive commodity business." - Bob Wilt, Alcoa
The company did not indicate where the plants that face possible shutdown are located.
"Alcoa continues to take decisive action, transforming its upstream portfolio to create a lower cost, globally competitive commodity business," said Bob Wilt, president of Alcoa's Global Primary Products division.
Aluminum prices have dropped about 30% since 2011, paralleling the slowdown in the economy of China, the key consumer.
At the same time, new refining and smelting capacity has come on line, especially in China, adding to the oversupply.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2015