SHANGHAI, Jun 28 (SMM) – China’s exports of aluminium sheet/plate and strip rose 9.7% from a month ago and 5.7% from a year ago to stand at 245,000 mt in May, showed the latest data from China Customs.
In the same month, the US hiked its tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods after trade talks between the world’s two largest economies collapsed. This is expected to lower orders from American buyers, and Chinese producers who do not have stable clients will likely be the first casualty.
Front-loading shipments to the US probably accounted for the increase in exports of aluminium sheet/plate and strip in May, growing the possibility of a decline in numbers for June and July.
SMM learned that cargoes that could arrive at US ports before July 1 will avoid the higher duties, and that it usually takes 30-45 days for a vessel to go from China to the US.
Chinese producers who have signed long-term supply agreements with foreign buyers told SMM that their export orders did not sharply shrink in May and June, and that they have found new clients from other countries after American buyers were deterred by the imposition of US anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties on Chinese common alloy aluminum sheet products at the end of 2018.