Aluminium Bahrain (Alba) has appointed BNP Paribas as its financial advisor and rating advisor, the smelter announced Tuesday. BNP Paribas will identify and assess financing options for Alba vis-a-vis the project to expand the company's smelter to include a sixth potline. Alba's last major expansion project took place in 2005 when it added a fifth potline to its smelter. This expansion required a financing of US$1.7 Billion. The financing required for the completion of the new potline is currently estimated to be on the order of US$2.5 Billion. The consummation of the project and the related financing are subject to the completion of a feasibility study, government and board approvals of the project and other conditions customary for a project of this nature. Work on the feasibility study is expected to commence by the end of this year. BNP Paribas was selected as financial advisor and rating advisor to the Company due to the bank's strong presence in Bahrain along with its extensive experience within the aluminium sector, Alba said. The signing ceremony took place in Paris with the Chairman of Alba’s Board of Directors, Mahmood Hashim Al Kooheji signing on behalf of the company and senior representatives from BNP Paribas' Board and MEA Region signing on behalf of BNP Paribas.