Metals News
Conveyor Failure Blocks Guinea CBG Bauxite Exports
industry news

CONAKRY, Sept 19 (Reuters) - Bauxite exports from Guinea's CBG, the world's top supplier of the aluminum ore, remained blocked on Monday after repairs to a conveyor belt used for loading ships failed, sources said.

Loading operations were first halted on Sept. 12 when a tear on the conveyor was discovered.

"The staples are not holding. Everything is blocked for the moment," said a source at the company who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak publicly.

"The losses risk becoming serious, as it has been eight days since this problem interrupted our work. Normally in eight days we would have loaded six ships," he said.

CBG, a joint-venture between Alcoa (AA.N: Quote), Rio Tinto (RIO.L: Quote) (RIO.AX: Quote) and the Guinean government, is the world's largest bauxite exporter company with annual shipments of around 13 million tonnes.

A spokesman for Alcoa, based in the United States, said on Monday that bauxite loadings were continuing "at a somewhat reduced pace until we can effect a permanent repair, which is expected soon." He said the conveyor was operating, but declined to give further details.

An official at Guinea's Mines Ministry confirmed that the repairs to the conveyor had failed on Sunday afternoon shortly after they had been completed.

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