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China aluminum exports at 3 year high on rising overseas prices

Aluminum shipments from China, the world’s largest producer and user, rose to the highest level in three years as higher prices overseas encouraged exports of the metal used in everything from aircrafts to window frames.

According to data released by the country’s General Administration of Customs, China shipped 380,000 tonnes of unwrought aluminum and aluminum products in July. That was the highest since 390,000 tonnes in July 2011 and up 23% from a year earlier.

According to Metal Bulletin data, the premium added to the LME price for immediate delivery at Rotterdam warehouses is at a record USD 380 per tonne compared with about USD 200 per tonne a year ago.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc said that the surcharge doesn’t include European Union tariffs. The global aluminum market will move into a deficit of 579,000 tonnes this year, increasing to 619,000 tonnes in 2015.

Mr Wang Chunhui an aluminum analyst at SMM Information & Technology Company said that “Producers increased exports to pursue profits outside of China. High overseas aluminum premiums are restraining demand from fabricators in Europe and increasing demand of Chinese products.”

Mr Ivan Szpakowski a commodity analyst at Citigroup Inc said that “Increasing Chinese exports in the H2 this year will lower prices in London and narrow the premium over Shanghai contracts. Exports of Chinese primary aluminum, used as a feedstock for fabricators, are charged a 15% duty while shipments of semi-finished and finished metal are not taxed. China also offers tax rebates on exports of some aluminum products.

Source – Bloomberg

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