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Discussions with Alcoa of Australia

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THE HON GREG COMBET AM MP Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Minister for Industry and Innovation


GC 151/12 24 June 2012


The Federal Government has been working closely with Alcoa of Australia in the months since the company announced a review of its Point Henry aluminium smelting operations.

We will continue those discussions and we will also liaise with the Victorian Government.

Alcoa has made it perfectly clear that the commercial difficulties at its Australian operations are due to low world aluminium prices and the high value of the Australian dollar and have nothing to do with the carbon price.

The company has put this clearly in recent correspondence from Alcoa of Australia’s managing director Mr Alan Cransberg to the Government which states:

“As Alcoa has previously stated, the review of the Point Henry Smelter and the current situation have not been brought about by the upcoming price on carbon, but are a result of the international price of aluminium and high Australian dollar.”

The Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has today again attempted to deceive the community about this issue.

His deceit, so easily exposed, represents contempt for the workers at Alcoa who deserve to hear the facts.

Aluminium is an industry which receives substantial assistance under the carbon price.

The effective carbon price for aluminium smelting is less than $1.30 a tonne of emissions.

This means the impact of the carbon price on aluminium production is equivalent to the impact of just a one cent increase in the value of the Australian dollar.

Media contacts: Mark Davis, Gia Hayne 02 6277 7920