China aluminium production rises 1.5 pct in May

14 June 2018

China’s aluminium production in May rose 1.5 percent to 2.79 million tonnes from a year earlier, data released by the National Bureau of Statistics showed on Thursday.

On a daily basis, the world’s top aluminium producer churned out 90,000 tonnes of the metal last month, compared with 92,300 tonnes in April, according to Reuters calculations based on the data.

Shanghai aluminium prices ticked 0.8 percent higher in May, after a 4.8 percent boost in April in the wake of U.S. sanctions on Russian producer Rusal. The metal is on course to gain around 5.6 percent in Shanghai this quarter.

The impact on London aluminium prices has been even more pronounced, prompting Chinese aluminium producers to ship more metal overseas in May than they had done for any month since December 2014 despite a 10 percent import tariff in key market the United States.

In the first five months of the year, China produced 13.6 million tonnes, a rise of 1.4 percent from the same period last year, the data showed.

Production of 10 nonferrous metals - including copper, aluminium, lead, zinc and nickel – rose 4.3 percent to 4.55 million tonnes from a year earlier. Year-to-date output was up 3.2 percent at 22.2 million tonnes, the data showed. The other non-ferrous metals are tin, antimony, mercury, magnesium and titanium.