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China June aluminum imports rise 30% from prior month

China’s aluminum imports in June rose 30% from the prior month, data released by the General Administration of Customs showed on Sunday.

Imports of unwrought aluminum and products – which include primary metal and unwrought, alloyed aluminum – were 294,081 tonnes last month, up from 225,458 tonnes in May and up 1.8% year-on-year.

January-June imports totalled 1.46 million tonnes, customs said, up 79.2% on the year.

Top aluminum maker China started importing much higher-than-usual volumes of the metal from mid-2020 as strong demand saw Shanghai prices far exceed London prices, opening an arbitrage window for cheaper material from overseas.

The Shanghai-London spread in May hit its widest since July last year, paving the way for the arrival of more inbound arbitrage flows last month.

Imports of bauxite, the main aluminum ore source, were down 3% year-on-year at 10.14 million tonnes in June, which was also up 11.3% from 9.11 million tonnes in May; first-half imports fell 5.5% on the year to 55.14 million tonnes.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Muyu Xu and Tom Daly. Editing by Kim Coghill and Mark Potter)

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