SEOUL, July 15 -- South Korea, Asia's third-biggest buyer of base metals, bought 2,000 metric tons of aluminum at a higher premium than last month as demand for the metal advanced on increased car output.
The Public Procurement Service, a state body that manages strategic commodities, paid Glencore International AG $115 a ton more than the London Metal Exchange official cash settlement price, Hwang Young Soo, a senior analyst at the agency, said in an e-mail late yesterday. The high-grade primary aluminum of non-Western origin is due for shipment by the end of August.
The latest premium is greater than the $108 a ton paid over the same benchmark in the last such tender on June 24 as the nation's car industry and other manufacturing industries remain "robust," Hwang wrote in the e-mail.
Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's largest automakers, led a 12th straight gain in monthly sales in June. South Korea's central bank on July 12 raised its economic growth forecast for this year to 5.9 percent, more than the 5.2 percent predicted in April.