UC Rusal commenced mining operations at its $25 million Kurubuka-22 project, which is located near Kurubuka in Guyana. The bauxite deposit is estimated at 30 million metric tons (mt). Development began in 2013 with construction of the mine, infrastructure development, building of access roads, barge loading facilities at the Berbice River, and a factory that allows the maintenance of a full production cycle from mining to dry bauxite barge loading. Optimization of logistics costs has been reached thanks to a reduction of transportation distance from the mine to a sea reloading point.
President of Guyana Donald Ramotar and Vladislav Soloviev, CEO of Rusal, attended the opening ceremony. “The development of the Kurubuka-22 mine is in line with Rusal’s strategy to strengthen vertical integration and secure aluminum production through in-house raw materials supply. The start of operations at the new mine will allow Rusal to supply its refineries with high-quality bauxite in the long run,” said Soloviev.
Rusal has been operating in Guyana since 2004 and owns a 90% stake in the Bauxite Co. of Guyana. The company’s annual bauxite production capacity is 1.7 million mt. Most of it is shipped to the Nikolaev refinery in Ukraine and the Aughinish refinery in Ireland.