Africa’s Primary Aluminum Production Challenges and Trends in 2023

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Africa, a key player in the global aluminum industry, witnessed intriguing dynamics in primary aluminum production throughout 2023. In December, production reached 133,000 tons, showcasing a modest month-on-month increase but a noteworthy 5.71% year-on-year decrease. Despite challenges, the market maintained its demand, revealing a complex narrative.

Annual Overview

The year 2023 concluded with a total production of 1.596 million tons, marking a 1.48% decline from the previous year’s 1.62 million tons. Notably, February and April posed significant hurdles with production slumping to 123,000 tons and 129,000 tons, respectively.

Quarterly Breakdown

Quarterly fluctuations were subtle but revealed an overarching decline. The first quarter recorded 392,000 tons, followed by 397,000 tons in the second, 403,000 tons in the third, and 404,000 tons in the fourth. This consistent downward trend suggests challenges persisting throughout the year.

Challenges Faced: Rising production costs, constricted energy supplies, and volatile global aluminum prices emerged as formidable obstacles. These factors, particularly evident in February and April, substantially contributed to the overall decline in production.

Market Demand vs. Production Challenges: Interestingly, despite these challenges, the market demand for primary aluminum remained robust. The inability to translate this demand into substantial growth underscores the impact of production impediments. This delicate balance between demand and challenges creates a landscape demanding strategic solutions.


Africa’s primary aluminum sector grappled with adversities in 2023, impacting production trends. As we navigate through challenges, the unwavering market demand signals opportunities for strategic interventions. Balancing cost-effectiveness, sustainable energy solutions, and navigating global price volatility will be imperative for Africa’s primary aluminum industry to regain momentum in the coming years.

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