SHANGHAI, Mar. 1 (SMM) – China has stepped up its efforts in environmental protection in recent years, and the central environmental protection inspection team has arrived at Sichuan for its latest inspections. SMM survey of nonferrous metal producers in the region finds the following insights.
Lead&zinc mines in Liangshan, an autonomous prefecture in Sichuan, have suspended production for the inspections. Moreover, two zinc smelters in Sichuan, integrated with mining and smelting, have cut or halted production, with smelting production losses below 5,000 tonnes. SMM will also survey the impact on nonferrous metal producers in other regions of Sichuan, such as Mianyang and Ya’an, and please see China Zinc Weekly for details.
The latest inspections are not expected to affect the lead market as there are no primary or secondary lead producers in Sichuan.
Silicon metal producers in Leshan, Sichuan Province have been informed to build new sewage treatment facilities within required time, such as sedimentation tank and circulating tank. Water for daily uses could be discharged after being treated, and using of stoking machine will be also restricted due to emission of large amounts of smoke and dust. Some producers in Shimian county, Ya'an have suspended production during the inspections period, but the impact on silicon metal market will be small due to a small number of online producers in the region.
Some small aluminum plate/sheet, strip producers in the neighboring region of Chongqing have suspended production in its casting lines, but keep production for hot-rolled. So far, the impact on aluminum market is limited.
There are no NPI producers in Sichuan now, and only one stainless steel mill locates in the region, with no impact from the inspections. The only one nickel smelter in the region stopped production in 2015 due to cash issues.
There are no tin smelters or large tin downstream producers in Sichuan, exerting no impact on the tin market.