SHANGHAI, Apr. 1 (SMM) –
According to the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association (CNIA), China produced 6.8 million mt of alumina during the first two months of 2013, up 16.47% YoY. SMM attributes the rise in alumina output to bauxite imports in Shandong returning to normal, the restart of idled capacity, and the commissioning of new alumina capacity in 2012.
Data from the CNIA show China produced 3.51 million mt of primary aluminum during the first two months of this year, up 15.7% YoY. Based on this aluminum output, SMM estimates aluminum capacity now in operation in China totals 21.71 million mt/yr. An additional 150,000 mt/yr in aluminum capacity at Xinjiang Jiarun Resources and 300,000 mt/yr at Shandong Weiqiao Group has already come online in 2013, but a total of 500,000 mt/yr in aluminum capacity across China has also been cut, with most production cuts occurring during March. Production cuts during January and February were limited compared with new capacity added, so China’s aluminum output continued to grow on a yearly basis during the first two months of this year.
According to the CNIA, China produced approximately 4.66 million mt of aluminum semis during the first two months of 2013, up 13.7% YoY. SMM’s latest survey found that operating rates at domestic aluminum semis producers fell from an average of 55% in January to 40% in February since producers took a longer than normal Chinese New Year holiday. The lower operating rate also contributed to a lower aluminum semis output.