In 2016, we were able to achieve excellent results, even if market developments have not always been favourable. We kept up with our positive trends in improvements, mainly regarding technological parameters. I regret to say, though, that we have not been flawless in the area of health, safety and environment, which is our top priority. In 2016, we had one occupational injury. Even if it was not a lost-time injury, we can’t be satisfied. We stick to our target of working without injuries and incidents, and we must patiently explain these priorities, require their full compliance and use proper tools to make sure that they are achieved.
In the second half of the reported year, the developments on the aluminium market were somehow more positive than we expected and the price was slowly on the rise. This was a help. It gave us time to take a deep breath and pull ourselves together. As to performance parameters, we were not able to meet some production and environmental targets. Yet, in spite of that, our production parameters are at a world-class level, even in comparison with other producers. This is the fruit of professional team work and continuous improvement.
On economic results, I can say that these are better than expected. This is due in large part to excellent technology management, and also due to very conscientious and selfless attitude to work taken by our staff, consistent monitoring of parameters and correction of irregularities by our engineers, as well as due to customer flexibility in production planning of finished products. Cost savings and relocation, mainly in maintenance, investment restrictions and lower prices of raw materials also contributed their significant share to positive results, as well as a continued improvement in all processes.
Slovalco works as a team of excellent, experienced professionals and remarkable people. Our results are at a level where even a small slip can cause a parameter change or variation. It is therefore critical that we keep on learning how to promptly identify these variations and take immediate corrective actions. For the coming period, our objective will be to work hard on details, whilst avoiding even small mistakes. Naturally, we have to work without injuries, take a good care of our work and living environment, observe strict discipline in costs and technological processes, keep a good and reliable maintenance and give sound support to our processes.
Slovalco emerged from some rather difficult times even stronger and ready to face the future that I believe will be bright.
Chief Executive Officer