(Bloomberg)--Alcoa Inc. rejected a report published yesterday in the Tuoi Tre newspaper that it agreed to temporarily halt a bauxite project in Vietnam pending a government review of the industry.
“We have not called a halt to the project,” Mike Belwood, a spokesman for the New York-based company, said today in a telephone interview. “We are awaiting the master review then we will make further decisions around development of the project.”
Aluminum Corp of China Ltd., known as Chalco, also agreed to a suspension of its bauxite project, Tuoi Tre reported yesterday. A spokesman for Chalco declined to comment when contacted by Bloomberg News.
The Vietnamese government asked state-owned Vietnam National Coal-Mineral Industries Group, known as Vinacomin, to suspend the projects, pending the development of a masterplan for the country’s bauxite industry, the newspaper reported. Vinacomin is a partner in the projects with Chalco and Alcoa.
Vinacomin has been waiting for two years for the government to revise its masterplan, Nguyen Van Hoa, a deputy chief executive officer at Vinacomin, said today in a phone interview.
Alcoa in 2008 signed an agreement to work with Vinacomin to develop Vietnam’s aluminum industry, which included exploring the feasibility of developing a bauxite mine and alumina refinery in Dak Nong province and conducting due diligence on acquiring a stake in another proposed alumina refinery.