Guinea Alumina Corporation (GAC), a subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA), has signed a term sheet with Guinea’s Government to develop an alumina refinery.

The preliminary agreement paves the way for the establishment of a refinery with an initial annual capacity of 1mt.

EGA CEO Abdulnasser Bin Kalban said: “Driving sustainable economic growth in the countries where we operate is a priority for EGA.

“We are now looking forward to advancing the alumina refinery project, which will further grow our contribution to the local economy and build local capability in the aluminium value chain.”

The alumina refinery project is expected to be constructed on GAC’s concession near Tinguilinta in the Boké province.

GAC is seeking JV partnerships to advance the project.

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To further bolster the ties with GAC, the Guinean Government will acquire a 15% shareholding in GAC.

This stake will transform into a 10% share of the mining operations and a 7.5% share of the alumina refinery company once production commences.

Additionally, the government will secure two board positions at GAC, including that of Chair.

GAC director-general Youssuff Sylla said: “The development of an alumina refining industry is a national priority to further increase the economic benefit of Guinea’s rich natural endowment of bauxite resources.

“We are working closely with the government to develop a project that is technically and commercially robust, and that can create value for Guinea and its people, and our company, for decades to come.

“The signing of the term sheet is an important step as it provides a framework for our negotiations for the way forward for this important project, and we now look forward to the next stage of our discussions with the Government.”

Recently, Emirates Global Aluminium entered a framework agreement with Aluminium Corporation of China in Beijing, furthering cooperation on the refinery project.

This collaboration underscores the international interest and potential of the venture.

The GAC development marks the largest greenfield mining investment in Guinea over the past four decades.

Since commencing production in 2019, GAC has become a significant employer in the Boké province, with approximately 3,200 individuals working at its sites.

In 2023, GAC’s economic contribution to Guinea included around $283m (GFr2.44trn) on local procurement, government payments and social contributions.