SHANGHAI, Apr. 15 (SMM) – The depressed demand downstream left silicon metal prices hovering at low prices recently, leaving silicon metal producers under heavy cost pressures. Some producers were thus forced to halt production, driving their operating rates down.
The low operating rates significantly curtailed low-grade silicon metal supplies at ports. This was particularly pronounced in Yunnan where fewer than 10 silicon metal producers are located, low-grade silicon metal was rarely seen in the warehouses in Kunming. In response, silicon metal prices in several regions started rising last Thursday. Prices will likely rise further should supplies further tighten. However, the price increase is not expected to sustain with low-water season for south China expected to fall about 1.5 months later.