MOSCOW, May 27 -- The world's top aluminium producer Russia's UC RUSAL (0486.HK: Quote) (RUAL.PA: Quote) said on Wednesday it aimed to raise domestic sales of light metal as industrial demand recovered after the global financial crisis.
"This year, we intend to sell 720,000-730,000 tonnes of aluminium in Russia and in the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States of the former Soviet Union)," Sergei Belsky, RUSAL's sales director said.
"We intend to raise the volumes by 39 percent, close to 1 million tonnes in 2011 and to exceed this level already in 2012," he told an aluminium products conference organised by Metal Supply and Sales magazine.
RUSAL sold less than 500,000 tonnes of aluminium in Russia and the CIS in 2009, Belsky said. The bulk of the metal used in a wide range of industries ranging from production of aircraft to beer cans was consumed in Russia.
"We believe that if there are no new calamities, aluminium consumption may rise by 37 percent this year, which proves a practically complete recovery of aluminium-consuming industries. In 2011, we expect a rise of some 39 percent on 2010," he said.
Belsky said RUSAL would like to sell more metal domestically if the government took measures aiming at cutting imports of aluminium products which were 162,800 tonnes in 2009.
"RUSAL forecasts that in 2010 imports of aluminium containing products will rise to 230,000 tonnes, or to the 2008 level," Belsky said.
"This means that we will be forced to export 230,000 tonnes more aluminium produced by RUSAL's Russian plants."
RUSAL, which has an annual capacity of 4.6 million tonnes, produced 3.9 million tonnes of aluminium in 2009. It plans to boost output by 3 percent this year as the market improves after a slump that prompted it to cut output last year.