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Aluminium News

Electric London cabs spur reopening of UK aluminium plant

By: Reuters     18th September 2017 Norwegian aluminium components producer Sapa is reopening a British plant to supply material for the country's first electric vehicle factory that will produce London black cabs. The move is a welcome one for Britain as it negotiates a divorce from the European Union that some fear will dampen... 

Welding company aims to bridge skills gap

By: Nica Schreuder     15th September 2017 Despite challenging economic conditions and a dire lack of welding skills, steel welding and fabrication service provider Federal Steel Company is committed to welding skills development initiatives that will expand nationally. Federal Steel Company MD Phakamile Buthelezi explains that the lack... 

Welding company aims to bridge skills gap
PHAKAMILE BUTHELEZI The Federal Steel Company has invested in initiatives to monitor and facilitate the proper training of young artisans

Organisation advocates a local recycling culture

By: Nadine James     8th September 2017 Despite numerous recycling initiatives and incentives in communities across the country – including collection points in close proximity to neighbourhoods – metal packaging recycling organisation MetPac-SA believes that an inherent recycling culture still needs to be established in South Africa.... 

Organisation advocates a local recycling culture
ONE MAN'S TRASH Aluminium and metal cans are regarded as high-value items by recyclers

Products ensure safety in offshore operations

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th August 2017 In the marine and offshore environment, metal corrosion is a major cost and safety factor. Steel gratings, stair treads, pressed floors and safety handrails manufacturer Vital Engineering offers a range of products designed to counter the effects of corrosion in maritime environments.  

Products ensure safety in offshore operations
CORROSION CONTROL Vital Engineering’s fibreglass gratings are manufactured with continuous glass fibre strands interwoven in both directions with thermosetting resins

PMI, weaker rand does not bode well for manufacturing – Seifsa

By: Natasha Odendaal     2nd August 2017 The poor performance of Absa’s July Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) and the weakening of the rand will place continued pressure on the manufacturing sector, the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) said on Wednesday. The seasonally adjusted Absa PMI declined by... 

Absa PMI falls further to 42.9 in July

     1st August 2017 The seasonally adjusted Absa Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) declined by a further 3.8 points to 42.9 in July, with all five of the major subindices having declined in July. The seasonally adjusted business activity index was under the most pressure, declining by 6.1 index points to a 39.3. The... 

Numsa warns ‘intransigent’ employers in engineering sector of possible strike 

By: African News Agency      18th July 2017 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) on Tuesday slammed “intransigent” employers in the engineering sector and warned of a “total shutdown” in the industry. This comes after Numsa declared a dispute with employers in the engineering sector following deadlock in wage... 

Impending strike could lead to more retrenchments in steel industry, Solidarity warns

By: Anine Kilian     17th July 2017 Trade union Solidarity on Monday said the impending strike in the steel industry would have a negative impact, both on the domestic steel industry and the country’s economy, as well as on job opportunities in the sector. This comes after the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) had... 

Seifsa appoints new economists

By: Anine Kilian     17th July 2017 The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) has appointed Dr Michael Ade chief economist and Marique-Mari Kruger economist with effect from July 17 and August 1, respectively. Ade will join Seifsa from the South African Revenue Service where he is capacity director... 

CSIR collaboration leads to the first locally manufactured aluminium valve

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th July 2017 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research’s (CSIR’s) collaboration with local butterfly valve manufacturer Paltechnologies (Paltech) has resulted in the successful development of a standard 80 mm diameter aluminium butterfly valve for use on electrical power transformers. The Paltech... 

Industry trends shift towards efficient, intelligent strategies

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     9th June 2017 The main feature of global demand for energy is a shift to maximising efficiency through delivering energy at the lowest cost per kilowatt per hour, says independent process industry consultant Santosh Gunpath. He tells Engineering News that this was evident from his interactions with industry... 

Industry trends shift towards efficient, intelligent strategies
Photo by Bloomberg
EFFICIENCY PRIORITISED With energy integral to every process, the objective should be to maximise the efficiency of delivering the necessary energy at the lowest cost per kilowatt per hour

Industry teams up to craft road map for ‘a million new manufacturing jobs’  

By: Terence Creamer     29th May 2017 Manufacturing associations across a range of subsectors, including plastics and packaging, chemicals, agroprocessing and steel have endorsed a Manufacturing Circle-led initiative, designed to find ways of creating an additional one-million manufacturing jobs in South Africa. Manufacturing Circle... 

Industry teams up to craft road map for ‘a million new manufacturing jobs’
Manufacturing Circle chairperson André de Ruyter explains the ‘Map-to-a-Million’ initiative. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Company expands in key African markets

By: Robyn Wilkinson     5th May 2017 Despite challenging macroeconomic headwinds causing a slowdown in consumer spending in many African markets in 2016, packaging company Nampak remains confident of the demographic fundamentals underpinning long-term packaging growth on the continent. 

Company expands in key African markets
ANDRE DE RUYTER Nampak aims to uphold good relationships with all relevant authorities and contribute meaningfully to the manufacturing sector in the African countries in which it operates

April PMI slumps to well below neutral 50 mark

By: Natasha Odendaal     2nd May 2017 After a solid first-quarter performance, the seasonally adjusted Absa Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) slumped in April 2017. The Bureau for Economic Research (BER) index fell to 44.7 index points from an average of 51.9 during the first quarter. 

April PMI slumps to well below neutral 50 mark

Alcoa swaps New York for the city of steel as Harvey simplifies

By: Bloomberg     20th April 2017 Alcoa is giving up the glamour of New York City and going back to Pittsburgh, as new CEO Roy Harvey steps up efforts to streamline the aluminium maker. Changing headquarters and closing seven locations across the US, Europe and Asia is part of a push to lower costs after the producer of the... 

New laser source expands possibilities

     14th April 2017 International laser systems provider Trotec Laser has expanded the product portfolio of the Galvo marking lasers with a new laser source MOPA. The new laser source allows expanded possibilities for users when marking metals and plastics. With the MOPA laser, users are able to also mark plastics... 

New laser source expands possibilities
MAKING A MARK Trotec’s MOPA laser source is especially suitable for dark plastics, as its shorter pulses often produce “vivid”, lighter markings, which results in a higher contrast

Rio Tinto sees bumpy ride for aluminum as China poses puzzle

By: Bloomberg     5th April 2017 Rio Tinto Group’s aluminum boss sees prices for the lightweight metal heading for an “extremely” volatile period, with uncertainty over when China will curb production helping to keep investors on edge. “That’s really where the uncertainty is at the moment,” Alfredo Barrios said in an interview... 

New agroprocessing-, metals-focused Ipap to be released in April

By: Schalk Burger     31st March 2017 A new Industrial Policy Action Plan (Ipap) focused on supporting the agroprocessing and metals industries, including foundries and the casting sector, will be released in April, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) director-general Lionel October says. “We are aiming to strategically support... 

New agroprocessing-, metals-focused Ipap to be released in April
Photo by Duane Daws
LIONEL OCTOBER The DTI is emphasising the importance of the fourth industrial revolution and modernising and upgrading the metals and casting industries

EIUG supports Eskom plan for new pricing deals with power-intensive firms 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd March 2017 The Energy Intensive User Group of Southern Africa (EIUG) believes there is policy, legislative and regulatory space to introduce new electricity pricing arrangements to help restart of idle mining and process-industry activities, as well as encourage new investments to absorb Eskom’s surplus,... 

EIUG supports Eskom plan for new pricing deals with power-intensive firms

Die-caster prepared for next growth cycle in industry

     10th March 2017 An increasing number of car parts such as engine blocks or structural parts are being manufactured from aluminum using high-pressure die casting, says die-casting technology supplier Bühler Die-Casting. 

Price weakness stemmed from excess capital dole out – Glencore

By: Martin Creamer     27th February 2017 The commodity price weakness from 2012 to 2015 was the result of an over-allocation of capital from 2006 to 2012, Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg told an American audience on Monday. In an address to the BMO Metals and Mining Conference, in Miami, Glasenberg said that capital over-allocation in the... 

Price weakness stemmed from excess capital dole out – Glencore
Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg

IHS Materials Price Index jumps to 18-month high; emergent weakness to undermine momentum

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd December 2016 Analytics firm IHS Markit reports that its Materials Price Index (MPI) rose for a sixth consecutive week, increasing 1.4% to hit a fresh 18-month high. IHS Global Insight Pricing & Purchasing senior economist Ben Orhan pointed out that ferrous metals once again drove the index higher, gaining... 

IHS Materials Price Index jumps to 18-month high; emergent weakness to undermine momentum

H1 performance points to improved FY performance for Hulamin

By: Natasha Odendaal     28th October 2016 Improved operating performance during the first half of the year – and subsequent improvements in the third quarter – have left JSE-listed Hulamin with expectations of a 20%-plus increase in earnings for the full year. In a trading update to shareholders on Friday, Hulamin highlighted predictions... 

Getting to grips with grade

     21st October 2016 Stainless steel is defined as a steel alloy with a minimum of 11% chromium content and performs better than ordinary steel in high temperatures and cryogenic applications, according to national distributor of stainless steel 3CR12, aluminum and special steels company Euro Steel. Stainless steel... 

New technology optimises manufacturing process

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd September 2016 Cape Town-based aluminium-frame structure manufacturer Speed Structures is adapting skill sets to enhance adaptability of temporary structures for a variety of applications, such as military, warehousing and agriculture, as well as the traditional event, exhibition and festival industry. 

New technology             optimises manufacturing process
Photo by Speed Structures
CLEAR-SPAN MARQUEE An example of a clear-span marquee, with clear spaces between the vertical columns

South32 aluminium production unchanged in FY2016

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd September 2016 Mining resources company South32 announced in its full report for the 2016 financial year that South Africa aluminium saleable production was largely unchanged in, as the impact of electricity load-shedding events were lower than expected, particularly in the December 2015 half-year. 

South32 aluminium  production unchanged  in FY2016
Photo by Bloomberg
ALUMINIUM SMELTING Aluminium being smelted for semi-finished products

Uncompetitive scrap metal prices causing further decline in industry

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd September 2016 Unless strong action is immediately taken to stem the export of scrap metal and keep it in South Africa at competitive prices, the scrap beneficiating industry will further decline, and directly affect the aluminium sector, says aluminium foundry alloys producer Zimco Aluminium Company (Zimalco)... 

Uncompetitive scrap metal prices causing further decline in industry
Photo by Bloomberg
ALUMINIUM SMELTING PLANT Scrap and aluminium metals are being processed further into semi-finished products

SMS group contracted to revamp aluminium plant

By: Zandile Mavuso     16th September 2016 Plant supplier SMS group has been contracted by aluminium processing company Impol Seval to revamp its aluminium hot rolling mill in Serbia. 

Preventative measures necessary to stop China dumping steel – Solidarity 

By: Natasha Odendaal     30th August 2016 Trade union Solidarity on Tuesday raised an alarm about the potential collapse of South Africa’s already-strained steel industry as cheap imports and “unfair trade practices” threaten the sustainability of local steel producers. Presenting its views to the International Trade Administration... 

Preventative measures necessary to stop China dumping steel – Solidarity 

Company supplies single chamber melting, casting furnace

     5th August 2016 Mechanical engineering company Hertwich Engineering will supply a melting and casting furnace with a capacity of 55 000 t of aluminium a year, as well as a charging machine, to Austrian aluminium product supplier AMAG. Commissioning of the new furnace is scheduled for mid-2017. The move to... 

Company supplies single chamber melting, casting furnace
DUAL FURNACE The new aluminum melting and casting furnace will have a capacity of 55 000 t a year

Hulamin weathers weak H1 with strong exports

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     25th July 2016 JSE-listed aluminium producer Hulamin’s earnings a share increased to 48c apiece for the six months ended June 30, compared with the 24c a share recorded in the six months to June 30, 2015. Headline earnings a share increased to 48c apiece in the six months under review, compared with the 25c... 

Insimbi sells 20% of its share capital to New Season Investment Holdings

By: Anine Kilian     13th June 2016 As part of its broader strategic black economic empowerment (BEE) and transformation initiative, JSE-listed alloy supplier Insimbi announced on Monday that it had sold 20% of its total issued share capital to industrial investment company New Season Investment Holdings. Insimbi’s founding... 

Insimbi sells 20% of its share capital to New Season Investment Holdings

Hulamin still frustrated by lack of aluminium tariff protection

By: African News Agency      22nd April 2016 Hulamin on Thursday expressed its continued frustration at the lack of tariff protection against cheaper imports as metals price remained weak, resulting in a significant negative impact on the financial performance of the company. Hulamin chairperson, Mafika Edmund Mkwanazi, in a statement said... 

Hulamin still frustrated by lack of aluminium tariff protection

Hope for aluminium casting industry

By: Sascha Solomons     8th April 2016 The Aluminium Federation of South Africa (Afsa) believes that potential for growth of the foundry industry currently lies in the automotive sector, as this is the largest market for aluminium castings. “Legislation worldwide is driving automotive companies and original-equipment manufacturers to... 

Hope for aluminium casting industry
Photo by Reuters
ALUMINUNUM GROWTH The aluminium foundry sector produces about 5 000 t/y of components

New opportunities emerge in China despite aluminium slump

By: Kim Cloete     17th March 2016 While the growth rate of aluminium use in China has fallen sharply since 2011, the country is expecting increased growth in the fields of transportation, packaging and electricity over the next five years. “Daily output has slowed down and shutting-down capacity has been rising quarter by... 

New opportunities emerge in China despite aluminium slump

Potential to ramp up employment in downstream aluminium industry

By: Kim Cloete     17th March 2016 Aluminium fabricator Hulamin has outlined ways to substantially grow the aluminium industry supply chain and boost employment. CEO Richard Jacob said it was possible to create 29 000 jobs in the industry by 2018, compared with the 16 000 registered in 2011. 

Potential to ramp up employment in downstream aluminium industry

Subdued outlook for aluminium in S Africa and globally

By: Kim Cloete     17th March 2016 South Africa’s aluminium export growth is expected to remain subdued this year at 0.4% and at just under 1.2% in 2017, according to the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa). 

Subdued outlook for aluminium in S Africa and globally
Seifsa chief economist Henk Langenhoven
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