Shanghai Nonferrous Metals News
SMM: China imported 1.36 mln t of nickel laterite in April 2020, down by 87.1 kt or 6% m-o-m and down by 70.2% y-o-y. Of this amount, 1.09 mln t was from the Philippines, up 11.6% m-o-m but down 54.8% y-o-y. Despite the Philippine rainy season having ended in April, nickel laterite exports from Surigao, have been impacted significantly by the COVID-19 pandemic.
SMM projects China’s overall nickel laterite imports will increase in May thanks to a gradual easing of mining and shipping restrictions in the Philippines. However, the actual tonnage of China’s nickel laterite imports (in Ni metal) may decline sharply due to depleting grades of Philippine exports.