SHANGHAI, Jul 11 (SMM) – Operating rates across licensed smelters of secondary lead in China unexpectedly declined in June as major smelters in Anhui, Jiangxi, and Guangdong underwent maintenance in a weak market, an SMM survey showed on Thursday July 11.
The rates averaged 46.36% in June, down 5.85 percentage points from May. This caused a decline of 18,000 mt in secondary lead production on the month in June, standing at 142,800 mt.
Operating rates for large smelters with an annual capacity above 100,000 mt stood at 43.52% in June, down 6.48 percentage points from a month ago, dragged by nearly half-a-month of maintenance at Anhui Huabo and suspension at Anhui Huaxin.
Equipment failure prevented Jiangxi Jinyang from meeting its monthly production targets in June, which also accounted for the lower rates across large smelters.
The average rate for smelters with an annual capacity of 50,000-100,000 mt lost 4.71 percentage points last month, to 51.88%, as Guangdong Xinyu suspended for maintenance on lower prices of lead. It planned to resume in mid-July. Smaller margins also prompted Hebei Gang’an to cut production in June.
Across small smelters with an annual capacity below 50,000 mt, the rate averaged 67.14%, remained unchanged from May.
Operating rates across unlicensed smelters of secondary lead nudged up in June as lower costs of battery scrap in late-June eased their losses.