SHANGHAI, Jul. 10 (SMM) - China’s imports of copper rose to this year’s high in June after some producers were said to hoard their stocks on low prices.
Inbound shipments of unwrought copper and the metal products increased 5.9% month-on-month to 379,951 tons last month, data from Chinese customs office showed today. They were 9.7% higher from a year ago.
``Domestic supplies are quite tight so more people turn to imports,’’ a trader said from Shanghai, ``It’s an open secret that top Chinese smelters have been holding their material from selling on low prices.’’
A shortage of scrap copper also contributed to more demand for the refined metal, market participants said.
China’s imports of scrap copper were 340,000 tons in June, down 5.6% month-on-month. Scrap imports were 2.1 million tons in the first six months, 7.2% lower year-on-year.
Imports of unwrought copper and copper products were 2 million tons in this year’s first half, down 20% from a year ago, according to customs data.