Analysis of the future supply pattern of electrolytic aluminum

Author: Wang Rong
As early as 2016, after the transfer of domestic electrolytic aluminum production capacity to traditional low-cost thermal power production areas reached its peak, Yunnan has already become a battleground for new electrolytic aluminum production capacity by virtue of its hydropower advantages. Major aluminum companies have brought indicators to Yunnan. Structure the pattern of electrolytic aluminum industry. However, since the beginning of this year, Yunnan has repeatedly reported power cuts and production reductions. In May, the aluminum plant’s electricity load continued to drop. In mid-July, the coal supply was insufficient. The surrounding high heat also caused the shortage of hydropower during the wet season. The aluminum plant had previously resumed production capacity. Reduced again, and plans to resume production and new investment were also shelved.
As far as the current power supply situation in Yunnan is concerned, at the end of June this year, the Wudongde Hydropower Station was put into operation, and the Baihetan Hydropower Station was also put into operation, which gave the market a better power supply expectation. However, when the hydropower in Yunnan was fully open during the high water period, it appeared again. The shortage of electricity has aroused strong market attention to Yunnan Hydropower. Based on this, the author integrates the power supply and demand in the whole province of Yunnan. Under the assumption that Baihetan will be put into operation as planned, the power supply and demand in Yunnan will still be tight in the third and fourth quarters of this year. There is a shortfall of 1.9 billion kWh, and a small surplus of about 500 million kWh in the fourth quarter, but the overall situation is still tight. From this point of view, the recent flood period electricity situation in Yunnan will be maintained, and there will be certain constraints on the commissioning of new local electrolytic aluminum production capacity in Yunnan and the resumption of reduced production capacity. In addition, due to the current decline in coal storage in power plants and the high coal price, after the dry season in the fourth quarter, Yunnan’s power supply may not be able to keep up with the demand for electricity, and it is not ruled out that the timing of switching between the high and low seasons may move forward, and the power supply shortage in Yunnan is not ruled out. There is also a probability that it will appear again. Therefore, in the whole year, the shortage of electricity supply continued. For electrolytic aluminum enterprises, the release rhythm of supply was further delayed, and the marginal increase in supply weakened.
In addition, from the perspective of the medium and long-term time dimension, the province’s electricity demand has increased significantly in Yunnan. Considering an increase of 4.5 million tons of electrolytic aluminum production capacity, an increase of 1 million tons of industrial silicon production capacity, and an increase of 140,000 tons of polysilicon production capacity, a rough calculation will increase the electricity demand by 82.2 billion kWh/year. If we do not consider the new generation of thermal power, wind power, photovoltaics, etc., according to the key hydropower projects currently planned in Yunnan Province, Wudongde, Baihetan and Toba can only provide about 16.2 billion kilowatt-hours/year of supply increase in the province. , Far less than the new electricity consumption in Yunnan Province. Therefore, unless Yunnan further increases investment and development of clean energy, according to the current planning situation, medium and long-term electricity in the province may become the norm, which will further restrict the normal production and new production of high-energy-consuming enterprises such as electrolytic aluminum plants. cast.
The power rationing in Yunnan during the flood season is almost the same as the reason behind the power rationing and production reduction of aluminum plants in Inner Mongolia under the dual control of energy consumption in March this year. As far as the current domestic electrolytic aluminum industry structure is concerned, after the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology set a capacity ceiling, since September last year, the long-term goal of carbon peaking and carbon neutrality has further clarified the production capacity development path of the electrolytic aluminum industry. The power curtailment and production reduction of aluminum plants in Yunnan and Inner Mongolia are the epitome of this industry change. The “ideal” is constantly “shining into reality”, and the carbon peak and carbon neutral targets have obvious constraints on the production capacity of electrolytic aluminum. Has become a norm. (Author’s unit: Guotai Junan Futures)

Leave a Comment