In December Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) commissioned a major brownfield expansion of its plant known as Line 6, which is expected to make the firm the world’s largest aluminium smelter.

Developed at a cost of some $3bn, the new line will add 540,000 tonnes of capacity to annual output, increasing it to more than 1.5m tonnes per year.

The Line 6 Expansion Project – which includes a new processing line and power station to provide electricity for the facility – is gradually being brought on-line, with completion expected by mid-2019.

The end-of-year sales volume for 2018 was approximately 1.01m tonnes, a 3.5% increase on the 2017 total of 978,000 tonnes. This came on the back of a 3% rise in production, according to company figures.

This increase in sales was reportedly driven by a higher value-added component, with processed output accounting for 60% of all shipments, compared to 57% in 2017.