Shanghai Nonferrous Metals News
China produced 2.89 mln t of primary aluminium in September 2019, down 3.7% on-year. China’s total primary aluminium output reached 26.46 mln during the first nine months of 2019, down 2.1% on-year. An incident at an IM smelter and production cuts by some Shandong and Xinjiang smelters reduced total monthly output, resulting in relatively low operational capacity overall in September. As of end-September, China had 35.05 mtpy of primary aluminium capacity in operation and 5.25 mtpy capacity under suspension or idled, with an operational rate of 87%.
Boosted by strong primary aluminium prices in October, smelters in Gansu and Qinghai are likely to restart their previously idle capacity. Strong aluminum output growth can be expected in IM with slower growth in other regions generated by new capacity in October. SMM forecast China’s aluminium output at 3.01 mln t for October, still showing a moderate drop of 3.34% y-o-y.
The primary aluminium de-stocking process will continue after mid-October and domestic primary aluminium inventories at social warehouses are estimated to be at 890 kt by end-October.