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China Hongqiao profit hits record on high aluminium prices; output falls for 3rd year

  • Shandong-based Hongqiao posted annual net income of 10.5 billion yuan ($1.62 billion) last year, according to a filing to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Friday.
  • Revenues were up only 2.3% year-on-year to 86.14 billion yuan, however, with Hongqiao also attributing its bumper earnings to lower production costs and lower impairment losses compared with a year earlier.
Published March 5, 2021

China Hongqiao Group, the world's biggest private sector maker of aluminium, saw annual profits leap 72.2% to their highest on record in 2020 amid soaring prices for the metal, although production fell for a third straight year.

Shandong-based Hongqiao posted annual net income of 10.5 billion yuan ($1.62 billion) last year, according to a filing to the Hong Kong stock exchange on Friday. That is the best result in company earnings records on Refinitiv Eikon going back to 2007, beating the previous high of 6.85 billion yuan in 2016.

Revenues were up only 2.3% year-on-year to 86.14 billion yuan, however, with Hongqiao also attributing its bumper earnings to lower production costs and lower impairment losses compared with a year earlier.

Shanghai aluminium prices sank to a four-year low in the immediate aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak in early 2020 as Chinese demand collapsed. But a rapid economic recovery saw prices end the year 22.5% higher and they touched a 9-1/2 year peak of 17,870 yuan a tonne on Thursday.

Hongqiao said it churned out 5.622 million tonnes of aluminium alloy products in 2020, down 0.4% from 2019 and the third straight annual decline.

Hongqiao last year shut down some of its Shandong smelting facilities and transferred capacity to Yunnan province in Southwest China, where it is using hydropower to make low-carbon aluminium.

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