SHANGHAI, Sept. 26 (SMM) --
According to China Customs, China’s imports of bauxite were 3.85 million mt during August, with imports mainly from Indonesia, Australia, India, and Germany. Imports from Indonesia reached 2.98 million mt and accounted for 77.48% of total bauxite imports, but down 170 kt MoM. China also imported 126.6 kt from India during August, with YTD imports from India through August growing to 488.2 kt, up 57.21% YoY.
According to China Customs, China’s alumina imports were 35 kt during August, down 85.84% YoY and down 24 kt MoM. Prices for alumina from Western Australia have fallen to USD 368/mt, while domestic alumina prices rose above RMB 2,900/mt, helping narrow the price spread. New aluminum capacity in northwest China will come online soon and raw material purchases are helping improve demand for alumina. In this context, SMM believes alumina imports will grow in September.
Customs data shows China exported 270 kt of aluminum semis during August, down 12.9% MoM. Since the high SHFE/LME aluminum price ratio squeezed profit margins at export-oriented aluminum semis producers, and since weak European and US economies depressed overseas consumption, SMM expects exports of aluminum semis to fall further during September.