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Aluminum and iron ore were popular in 2021

Jan 4, 2022

Aluminum and iron ore from the north coast were at the top of Quebec exports in 2021. These results were released in the third quarter of 2021 compiled by the Institute of Statistics of Quebec.

Quebec aluminum triumphed again in 2021 and was the most popular exported product from that province.

Aluminum accounted for a 9.5% share of total exports, while iron, which ranks third in the export ranking, constitutes more than 5% of products exported in 2021.

The Côte-Nord aluminum smelters supply more than 30% of Quebec production, while all the iron in Quebec leaves through the ports of Sept-Îles and Port-Cartier.

Gabriel Striganuk, co-president of the Chamber of Commerce of Sept-Îles Uashat mak Mani-Utenam stated that this was made possible for iron due by the fact that the aging infrastructure in many countries and the programs that have been announced by these various countries to deal with the consequences of COVID-19 often require steel for the infrastructure.  According to Gabriel Striganuk, this situation has a positive effect on the entire North Shore with increased investment and production of iron ore.

Aluminum’s lightness, solidity, durability, flexibility, high conductivity, resistance to corrosion and affordability make it a metal with considerable growth potential, in both its pure and alloy forms.The aluminum industry is an important manufacturing sector in Canada, with 10 primary aluminum smelters, one of them located at Kitimat, British Columbia, and the other nine in Quebec. With nearly 6% of world production, Canada is the world’s fourth-largest aluminum producer, after China, Middle East and Russia.

In Quebec, Alouette, Rio Tinto Alcan and Alcoa have concentrated their aluminum production operations in outlying regions, including the St. Lawrence North Shore, creating thousands of jobs and major opportunities for the hundreds of businesses that supply the industry and transform aluminum into finished products.

One such company that benefited from a high aluminum demand and the high value of the metal in 2021 is the Alouette aluminum smelter. With more than 850 employees, it is the number-one private employer in Sept-Îles, Quebec.

Alouette Mine
Pictured: Aluminerie Alouette Inc. located in Sept-Îles, Quebec

The Aluminerie Alouette consortium is made up of the following five shareholders: AMAG Austria Metall AG (Austria, 20%), Hydro Aluminium (Norway, 20%), Investissement Québec (Canada, 6.67%), Marubeni Metals & Minerals (Japan, 13.33%) and Rio Tinto (Canada, 40%).

Despite the impact of the pandemic, 2020 was a record-breaking year for Aluminerie Alouette, with over 620,000 tonnes of aluminium production. This was made possible by exceptional employee engagement, rigorous and responsible management and the great respect the company has shown toward communities and the environment. The results from the most recent Sustainable Development Report say a lot: the company continues to minimize its environmental footprint through innovation, while broadly respecting the standards and targets in place. It remains one of the greenest aluminium smelters in the world.

This year (2022) the company celebrates its first 30 years of operations.

For more information on this mining operation visit https://www.alouette.com/

Tags: Quebec / Processing / Metals / All Articles