Production cutbacks both in China and South Africa fueled metal prices to soar across the international market, but China still lagged behind of the international market in the upward cycle.
SHFE 3-month contract price was 19,386 yuan/t in Q1 2008, 4% higher than the average in Q4 2007.
China suffered a loss of 1.73mln tpy in its aluminum production capacities in Q1 this year. Currently, several damaged aluminum smelters are trying to resume production. With all the overhauling work ongoing well, Antaike estimates the real production loss will narrow to 450,000 tonnes for the first half of this year, but there is little news of production cutbacks outside of China.
Antaike lowered its forecast for primary aluminum production in China in 2008 from the previous 15.40mln tonnes to the current 15.10mln tonnes, by taking the dropping production in Q1 into consideration.
High consuming season will be conventionally rolling in after Q1. However, Chinese trader and consumers are complaining of that the expected peak time has not come yet. Aluminum demand is hurt by a combination of declining external demand, tightening domestic macro-economy, as well as the export-discouraging policies. Antaike adjusted down its forecast for primary aluminum consumption by 3 percent points to 14.64 mln tonnes in 2008.
But little change is made on Chinese aluminum market balance, with both production and consumption forecasts being revised. The supply surplus is set at 260,000 tonnes in 2008, similar to that in 2007, with the export equivalent to the import roughly.
Antaike's view is that softening aluminum consumption in Q2 may bring a fallback to aluminum price. The aluminum market will be under bigger pressure after production loss being recuperated.
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Issue 176 - August 2011
INSIDE THIS ISSUE
Processing trade encouraged to extend industrial chain
Bauxite and alumina
Shanxi Huaxing building greenfield alumina project
NDRC approves Shanxi Tongde alumina project
Qingmai Aluminum commissions newly-built potline
East Hope Baotou Aluminum and Shandong Xinfa Hope Aluminum obtain credit lines from China Minsheng Bank
Chinalco SWA reports record profits for H1
C.S. Aluminium expands FRPs capacity
Chinese Primary Aluminum Output by Region in June 2011
Chinese Alumina Output by Region in June 2011
Chinese Aluminum Semis Output by Region in June 2011
Imports and Exports of Al Products in June 2011