Sohar Aluminium reaches full production using Rio Tinto Alcan's benchmark AP technology

    MONTREAL, April 29 /CNW Telbec/ - Rio Tinto Alcan and Sohar Aluminium
have now reached full production at their joint venture facility in the
Sultanate of Oman. The newly inaugurated aluminium smelter has an initial
production capacity of 360,000 tonnes per year and is positioned in the first
quartile of the industry cost curve.
    "The Sohar Aluminium project is an example of a mutually beneficial
partnership," said Tom Albanese, Chief executive, Rio Tinto. "With access to
an ongoing, competitively priced power supply, this facility will create
concrete economic diversification opportunities throughout the region."
    "I would like to thank everyone involved in the success of the Sohar
Aluminium project and in ramping up the smelter both on schedule and on
budget," said Jacynthe Côté, Chief executive, Rio Tinto Alcan. "With Rio Tinto
Alcan's benchmark AP 36 technology in place, this inauguration marks another
example of how our proven power-to-product solutions contribute to maintaining
our competitive edge."
    More than six million tonnes of global aluminium capacity is already
equipped with AP technology, generating exceptional value and sustainability
for operators around the world. AP technology is the most energy efficient and
environmentally friendly smelter technology commercially available.
    Rio Tinto Alcan's partners in the Sohar Aluminium project are the Oman
Oil Company S.A.O.C. and the Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority. This
joint venture strengthens Rio Tinto Alcan's presence in the Middle East and
will enable it to explore other opportunities in this important region.
    In addition to its equity interest in the Sohar Aluminium project, Rio
Tinto Alcan assumes responsibility for technical and operational support as
well as sales and marketing of all metal exported.

    About Rio Tinto

    Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the
UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London and NYSE listed company, and Rio Tinto
Limited, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.
    Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral
resources. Major products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, energy (coal and
uranium), gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and
iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia
and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe
and southern Africa.

For further information:

For further information: Stefano Bertolli, Rio Tinto Alcan Media
Relations, Canada, (514) 848-8151,;;

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