(Adds detail on refinery, background on IPO)
RIYADH, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala Investment Co said it expects to list its unit Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA), one of the world's biggest aluminium producers, next year.
Reuters reported in March that EGA had chosen banks to advise on the listing, but this is the first time its owner has confirmed the planned IPO.
"We hope to take this company public in 2018," Mubadala CEO Khaldoon al-Mubarak told investors at a conference in Riyadh on Tuesday. Mubadala has not said where EGA will list.
Owned by Mubadala and Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD), aluminium producer EGA was created in 2013 when state-owned companies Dubai Aluminium (Dubal) and Abu Dhabi's Emirates Aluminium (Emal) merged.
Its enterprise value was put at $15 billion at the time of the merger and Al-Mubarak said it contributed about $5 billion to the United Arab Emirates' annual gross domestic product, which totalled $349 bln last year, according to the World Bank. EGA increased its net profit by 10 percent in 2016 to 2.1 billion dirhams ($570 million) despite a fall in revenue.
Al-Mubarak said EGA survived the sharp drop in commodity prices in 2015 by keeping costs down.
He said the company is investing $1.2 billion in a bauxite mine in Republic of Guinea, which could supply an alumina refinery in the UAE.
Al-Mubarak said Mubadala is also very keen to invest in technology, citing its recent move to set up a venture capital arm that will oversee a fund set up with Japan's SoftBank. (Reporting by Saeed Azhar; Editing by Susan Fenton)