Saudi Ma'aden restarts aluminium plant production line

Reuters Middle East

KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia, Dec 29 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma'aden) has restarted one of the two potlines at its new aluminium smelter in Saudi Arabia, the company said on Sunday.

The $10.8-billion aluminium plant at Ras al-Khair, a joint venture between Ma'aden and U.S.-based Alcoa, shut one of its smelting lines in mid October due to problems encountered during a ramp up of production.

"The ramp up and increase of the first potline production is expected to reach production capacity within the second quarter of 2014," Ma'aden said in a Saudi stock market statement. It did not say when production resumed.

The other potline, a series of containers used to smelt aluminium, did not have to shut during its initial ramp up. The two lines have a combined production capacity of 740,000 tonnes a year of aluminium. (Reporting by Reem Shamseddine, editing by Daniel Fineren)