SHANGHAI, Aug 28 (SMM) – China's imports of tin ore grew 14% on the month to stand at 4,200 mt in metal content in July as falling prices of London tin and ore resource shortage in China drove more overseas miners to tap Chinese market.
China’s tin ore market saw demand exceeding supply last month as most domestic smelters recovered from June’s maintenance and downstream consumers stepped up purchases after Shanghai tin prices fell to a nearly three-year low.
Supply in Jiangxi province and in north China was tighter than that in the major production area of Yunnan province.
In the first seven months of this year, however, tin ore imports remained 18% lower from a year ago, and stood at 28,100 mt in metal content, customs data showed. Materials from Myanmar accounted for 25,200 mt, down 26% from the same period last year.
The share of tin ore originated from Australia, which contains higher metal content, stood at highs among total imports this year.
Separately, customs data also showed that China’s imports of tin ingot rose 29% from June but fell 56% from July 2018 to stand at 175 mt, while exports of tin ingot decreased by 44% on the month and by 38% on the year to 216 mt.
An open import arbitrage window triggered an influx of overseas refined tin to China last month.
Imports of tin ingot in the first seven months of this year shrank 36% from a year ago and posted 1,011 mt, while year-to-date exports climbed 49% to 5,187 mt.