Home Sessions China Outbound Session: Risks and Opportunities in Investing in Foreign Countries

China Outbound Session: Risks and Opportunities in Investing in Foreign Countries

Keynote Speech and Presentation China has already established operational assets in foreign countries over many years. In the aluminium sector alone, China has been active in Guinea, Indonesia, Australia and in the Caribbean. Not to mention technology sales to countries such as Kazakhstan and into West Africa. But outbound investment is a difficult path, especially for Chinese companies. There are numerous hurdles to climb, including different labour laws, environmental laws, as well as cultural and language differences. Looking “Beyond the Horizon”, where will future Chinese investment be? Will we see alumina refineries and smelters in Guinea?  Will Indonesian electricity be harnessed for future Chinese plants? What about other places in West Africa, South East Asia and South and Central America?

Keynote Speaker:Paul Adkins, Founder and Managing Director AZ China Ltd.

Simultaneous Translation will be provided from Chinese (Mandarin) to English and English to Chinese (Mandarin).

Panel Discussion: What can we learn from the past? Rio Tinto’s purchase of Alcan, Alcoa’s investment in Chalco, Chalco’s investment in Simandou – some big errors and failures in the past should teach us something.

Moderator:Jerry Van Alphen, Chief Financial Officer, Sohar Aluminium LLC.


  • Panthea Geramishoar, Chief Executive Officer, SBDT Guinea, HBR Member of Advisory Council
  • Jim Lennon, Managing Director of Red Door Research Ltd.
  • Scott Phegan, Independent Consultant, Former ALCOA Australia Senior Manager in International Alumina Projects
  • Senior Rep from China involved in China Outbound Investments and Construction (Name will be disclosed soon)



Questions can be voiced 24 hours prior to the broadcast of the live session. Delegates can also send their questions throughout the duration of the session. The moderator will be receiving the questions and including the relevant ones in the panel discussion. The audience can choose whether they require to remain anonymous or if they allow for their name to be mentioned. 

Simultaneous Translation will be provided from Chinese (Mandarin) to English and English to Chinese (Mandarin).

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Nov 17 2021


9:00 am - 10:30 am

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Nov 17 2021
  • Time: 4:00 am - 5:30 am


  • Jerry Van Alphen
    Jerry Van Alphen
    Chief Financial Officer, Sohar Aluminium LLC

    Jerry van Alphen is the Chief Financial Officer of Sohar Aluminium since 2013, responsible for Finance, IT, Supply Chain and Commercial. He is also the Secretary of the Board of Directors. During this time, he has helped to grow Sohar’s position as a global benchmark smelter. Previously he spent 20 years with aluminium multinational Alcoa Inc., in a number of senior finance assignments in Europe, the USA and China. Jerry is a qualified Chartered Accountant, with degrees in commerce and systems management.

  • Jim Lennon
    Jim Lennon
    Managing Director, Red Door Research Ltd.

    Jim has over 40 years of experience in researching the international metals and mining industries
    Jim Lennon worked at Macquarie from 1994 to 2013. He left Macquarie in June 2013 and set up his own consulting company, Red Door Research Ltd. The consulting company specialises in the economic analysis of hard commodity markets. Jim remains a part-time consultant to Macquarie.
    Until June 2013, he was Chairman of Commodities at Macquarie, having worked for Macquarie for 19 years. He founded and headed up a 10 person research team in London, Singapore and Shanghai which serviced the equity, LME trading and corporate advisory divisions of the bank with steel, coal, metals and minerals research and market intelligence.
    Jim and his team at Macquarie were regularly ranked number one in various surveys of commodities research among equity investors for over a decade.
    Prior to Macquarie, Jim worked for 10 years at CRU International, where he headed up a team specialising in Special steels (including stainless steel) and steelmaking alloys (mainly manganese, silicon, chrome, nickel and molybdenum). While at CRU, Jim also undertook major studies on metallurgical coal and iron ore.
    Jim’s current major specialisations are the main base metals and steel industries and their raw materials including nickel, chrome, molybdenum, iron ore and coking coal.
    Before joining CRU, Jim worked as a marketing analyst at New Zealand Steel. He has also worked as an Associate Director of Metals and Mining Research at Shearson Lehman Hutton Securities.
    Jim has a Masters degree in Economics from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He has a strong interest in development economics.

  • Panthea Geramishoar
    Panthea Geramishoar
    Chief Executive Officer, SBDT Guinea, HBR Member of Advisory Council

    Panthea Geramishoar is the CEO of SBDT, Societe des bauxite de Dabola-Tougue, Guinea, West Africa. Panthea is a metallurgical engineer while holding a MBA as well as a DBA. She has been involved in analyzing the aluminium market throughout her 19-year working experience and aluminium is the passion of her life. A predominance over the global trajectory of aluminium industry and of its supply chain with a focus on bauxite and alumina, together with her technical know-how of the production processes, have given her the right set of skills for the corporations she has been affiliated with in different positions. Her main role in her previous companies has been to use her technical and market knowledge to find the appropriate investment opportunities for the enterprise, develop and defend the idea in front of the board and guiding the project all through the construction and even operational phases. She has been a key team player in four aluminium green-field smelter projects, one alumina refinery project, one FRP project and supervising an operational alumina refinery. Panthea has been regarded as a thought leader in aluminium industry for the companies she worked with whose opinion is sought-after by the top management for the comprehensive reports and outlooks. She is equipped with project management and feasibility reports preparation skills, is fluent in Persian, English and French, enjoys very much constructive negotiations as well as broadening her professional contacts in order to add to the synergy of the industry. She is also a Wushu coach and a referee.

  • Paul Adkins
    Paul Adkins
    Founder and Managing Director, AZ China Ltd.

    Paul Adkins is founder and Managing Director of AZ China Ltd, a leading China-based consultancy on China’s primary aluminium industry.

    Paul has more than 30 years’ experience, including almost 14 years with Alcoa, 5 years with the former Alcan (now part of Rio Tinto) and 4 years with Tomago Aluminium in Australia. Paul holds an MBA from Newcastle University GSM.

    Paul is well known as a controversial and talented speaker at international aluminium conferences, and has been a regular guest on the global Reuters Base Metals Forum.

  • Scott Phegan
    Scott Phegan
    Managing Director and Founder of ByDesign Technology & Strategy

    A global Alumina Project and Technology veteran of 30yrs, Scott cut his Refining teeth at one of the benchmark Refineries with Alcoa but soon transitioned to design and project execution developing Greenfield Refineries and Brownfield expansions for 25yrs in or for Australia, Brazil, Jamaica, Suriname and Guinea. Living and working in Brazil and then North America for 10yrs while developing these projects across all points of the Alumina world Scott has a keen understanding of the cultural challenges and imperatives of doing business overseas in regions and cultures alien to his environment. In latter half of his career Scott became increasingly involved in the Bauxite industry, participating in Business development activities in Vietnam, China and Indonesia spending many weeks across numerous visits to the regional areas of those countries as well as the business centres. Now as Managing Director and Founder of ByDesign Technology & Strategy, Scott specialty is project development, execution and governance where he also has acquired a broad knowledge of the cultural differences which drive business practices and which can lead to investment success or failure.

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