Russian aluminum giant RUSAL reports 40% surge in net profit despite US tariffs & sanctions

Russian aluminum giant RUSAL reports 40% surge in net profit despite US tariffs & sanctions
Net income of Russia’s major aluminum producer RUSAL soared $1.698 billion in 2018, marking a significant year-on-year growth of 39 percent, the company said in its report on annual results.

Revenue increased 3.1 percent to $10.28 billion against $9.969 billion for the same period the previous year.

Growth was reportedly due to a 7.2 percent increase in aluminum prices at the London Metal Exchange. In 2018, a ton of the metal was priced at $2,110 compared to $1,968 in the previous year.

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The reported recurring net profit saw a 7.8 percent year-over-year surge in 2018 and amounted to $1.695 billion.

“The aluminum market in 2018 was seriously affected by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions as well as the trade wars and imposed import duties that resulted in significant growth of premiums and prices,” the report reads.

In April 2018, RUSAL, the world’s second-largest aluminum producer and one of the biggest global supplies, was included in an extended blacklist of enterprises and individuals hit by US economic penalties.

The company’s shares plummeted to an all-time low on the news, with analysts expressing doubts over the producer’s ability to keep up operations.

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Moreover, Russia was included in the list of the nations slapped with 10 percent aluminum exports to the US. Moscow introduced retaliatory measures and appealed to the WTO to resolve the metal tariffs dispute.

“Despite the OFAC Sanctions, RUSAL’s robust full year results demonstrated skillful crisis management alongside the ability to adapt to a new operations’ environment.

“It maintained its strong market position through its high managerial competence and operational flexibility,” the company’s CEO Evgeniy Nikitin said, commenting on the 2018 results.

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