Gladstone welcomes 300 delegates for global alumina conference

10 September 2018

Gladstone has welcomed visitors from around the world at a global mining conference, confirming its place at the centre of the Australian alumina industry.

The three-day Alumina 2018 International Conference kicked-off at the Gladstone Entertainment and Convention Centre this morning with more than 300 leading industry producers and suppliers in attendance.

Alumina 2018 chair and Rio Tinto refinery support manager Dr Anthony Canfell said "Rio Tinto is pleased to welcome our guests to Gladstone which is not only home to our Yarwun and QAL alumina refineries but a great location to visit, live and invest.

"We have a long and successful history in the region, and as the organiser and major sponsor of this event it is our pleasure to showcase our operations to the world."

The forum's objective is to bring the world's alumina producers and customers together to exchange ideas and information, present papers, forge new networks and work to the common goal of pursuing efficient refineries for the future.

In the keynote address Rio Tinto Aluminium Pacific Operations managing director Bruce Cox shared a case study in ever-improving efficiency and responsibility following with the conference theme of Efficiency for the Future.

"Our bauxite to alumina to aluminium supply chain invests A$3.7 billion in Australian wages, suppliers and community contributions every year. We support 5,600 jobs across Australia in our aluminium business including 3,000 right here in Gladstone.

"This conference provides a unique opportunity for the industry to come together to discuss common challenges including cost reduction, optimisation of raw materials, energy use and the adoption of new technology.

"It is this continual drive for improved efficiency that will ultimately result in a sustained and thriving alumina industry for the future," Bruce said.

The conference will feature presentations, social functions and industry tours. It will also host an alumina technology roadmap workshop on the final day which will guide research and development in the industry to 2050 and beyond.

This year's event is the 30th anniversary of the conference and is the second time it has been held in Gladstone.