First Capesize vessel sails from EGA’s GAC in Guinea
Emirates Global Aluminium, today announced that the first Capesize vessel has sailed from its bauxite mining subsidiary Guinea Alumina Corporation in the Republic of Guinea.
The vessel, the MV Berge Rosa operated by shipping line Berge Bulk, is bound for a customer in India laden with 173,000 tonnes of bauxite ore. Capesize vessels are amongst the world’s largest bulk cargo ships and some 300 metres long.
Bauxite exports from GAC began in August, but have so far only used smaller vessels.
GAC’s port is at Kamsar is on the river Nunez, 17 kilometres from the open sea. EGA signed a long-term logistics agreement last year with Louis Dreyfus Ports Limited and Abu Dhabi Ports Company, who established a joint venture to develop a barging and transshipment service in deeper waters offshore Kamsar. This enables bauxite to be transferred to Capesize vessels for ocean shipping.
Abdulla Kalban, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of EGA, said, “Using Capesize vessels to transport bauxite from GAC lowers shipping costs per tonne and contributes to the global competitiveness of our ore. The Capesize vessel that has sailed today is the first of many over the decades ahead as GAC ramps up, reliably supplying our bauxite customers around the world.”
EGA’s transshipment facility in Guinea has a transshipper and a floating crane, which are positioned at each side of a Capesize vessel. Bauxite is brought to the transshipment location from GAC’s port using high capacity, special purpose self-propelled barges. It takes an average some 15 barge loads to fill each Capesize vessel, in an operation which typically takes less than five days.
Bauxite is the ore from which aluminium is derived and is refined into alumina, the feedstock for aluminium smelters.
EGA invested some $$1.4 billion to develop GAC, one of the largest greenfield investments in Guinea in the past 40 years.
EGA is also using Capesize vessels to transport bauxite ore to the UAE as feedstock for its Al Taweelah alumina refinery in Abu Dhabi. This bauxite is supplied by Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinée.