Shanghai Nonferrous Metals News

China produced 745 kt of NPI (converted to 29.9 kt in Ni metal) in May 2023, up by 9% m-o-m but down by 17% y-o-y in actual tonnage. Thanks to stable nickel laterite prices at low levels, domestic NPI prices were relatively steady during May. Meanwhile, in view of falling coal prices, domestic smelters were capable of some profit margins during the month.

Downstream stainless-steel producers ramped up operations in May, increasing demand for NPI and resulted in production resuming at some smelters. China produced 22.6 kt of high-NPI and 7.3 kt of low-NPI in May, up by 3% and 12% respectively. Looking forward to June, SMM forecast domestic NPI production to rise to 31.9 kt (in Ni metal) in June, up by 7% m-o-m, boosted by increased profit margins and resumptions of some previously idled smelters.

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