As of 15th March, Weiqiao has resumed 200 ktpy primary aluminium capacity that was shut down during the winter production curb period (15th November 2018~15th March 2019). The remaining 500 ktpy capacity is to be restarted gradually from end-April.
China’s domestic primary aluminium capacity increased by approximately 700 ktpy during Q1 2019. China produced 8.63 mln t of primary aluminium during Q1 2019, down 1.2% on-year, representing limited supply growth.
Industry analysts forecast a total of 1.54 mtpy primary aluminium capacity will be resumed in the short-term boosted by rising prices and policy stimuli. Primary aluminium prices have been rebounding consistently, rising from RMB 13,500/t at the beginning of March to RMB 14,200/t at present. Meanwhile, Qinghai is planning to cut electricity prices. Rising prices and favorable electricity policies are likely to encourage more capacity resumptions and new-starts, and the rapid growth in output is likely to weigh on prices.