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China’s October Aluminium Imports Rise On Solid Demand, Fears Of Reduced Domestic Supply

China’s aluminium imports rose for the fifth straight month in October, customs data showed on Saturday, as buying appetite improved amid solid demand and expectations of reduced supply in the domestic market.

The world’s biggest consumer and producer of aluminium imported 351,065metric tons of unwrought aluminium and products including primary metal and unwrought, alloyed aluminium last month, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.

October imports climbed 5.8%from 331,716 tons imported in September and were up 78.7%from a year earlier.

The light metal is widely used in construction, transport and packaging industries.

Demand from the new energy sector has been strong although consumption in the traditional sectors remains constrained by China’s flagging economic recovery despite a slew of stimulus.

Fears of reduced domestic supply propelled more buying from abroad, however.

Aluminium smelters in southwestern Yunnan province started cutting a total of 1.15 million tons of capacity in early November to comply with power curbs expected to last until April.

Yunnan, with around 5.7 million tons of capacity, is the fourth-biggest aluminium producing region in China and accounts for around 12% of the country’s total capacity.

Imports of the light metal for the first 10 months were at 2.39 million tons, up 27.5%from the same period in 2022.

China’s imports of primary aluminium from Russia have surged 191% to 806,253 tons in the first nine months this year, according to customs data.

Imports of bauxite, a key raw material for aluminium products, rose 24.7%on-year to 11.1 million tons last month, the data also showed, underpinned by strong demand.

Domestic output of primary aluminium hit a record monthly high, according to data released earlier this week, thanks to higher profits for smelters.

Bauxite imports over the January-October period totalled 117.7 million metric tons, up 13.7%from a year earlier, the data showed.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Amy Lv and Dominique Patton in Beijng; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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