State-owned National Aluminium Company (Nalco) has increased the price of the metal across the categories by Rs. 5,000 a tonne in the wake of firming up of the prices in the London Metal Exchange (LME).

Requesting anonymity, a senior company official told PTI that the hike has already been effected from April 2 and with this, the average aluminium price currently stands at Rs. 1.21 lakh per tonne.

“We have effected the price hike by Rs. 5,000 per tonne. This was required to bring the price of the metal at par with the LME,” he said.

The price of aluminium on the London Metal Exchange (LME) is currently hovering at around $ 2,600 a tonne from just over $ 2,500 per tonne a month ago.

Nalco, the second-biggest producer of aluminium in the country, had also raised prices of the metal in January, but corrected them in the third week of the month itself as the global price slackened.

It had again increased the price by Rs. 6,000 a tonne in February, but reduced it by Rs. 2,500 per tonne in March.

The price of aluminium is on the upswing as a result of the slight demand-supply mismatch of the metal in the wake of closing down of some smelters in China.

Global production and consumption of aluminium currently stands at 39-40 million tonnes per annum. A slight change in the supply side lead to a price push.

However, the current “small” mismatch is only a temporary phenomenon as with the firming up of the price, the closed smelters have again resumed operation, the official said.

Nalco achieved its highest-ever cast metal production of 4,43,597 tonnes in 2010-11, against the previous best of 4,31,488 tonnes in 2009-10.

On the sales front too, it recorded its highest-ever metal sales of 4,38,952 tonnes against a previous best of 4,35,979 tonnes in 2009-10, it said.

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