SHANGHAI, Oct 11 (SMM) – Primary lead output in China fell as expected in September as producers in major production province of Henan faced output controls amid anti-smog alert across Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei and surrounding areas in late September.
SMM data showed that domestic output of primary lead stood at 249,600 mt in September, down 1.77% from August and 2.74% from September 2018. Production in the first nine months of this year remained 0.52% higher than the same period a year ago.
Last month, maintenance at large and medium scale smelters of Henan Yuguang, Jiangxi Copper, and Yunnan Mengzi affected production, which offset the output growth from recovery of Hechi Nanfang, Henan Minshan, and Hunan Shuikoushan.
Smelters that resumed from August’s overhaul accelerated production as elevated treatment charges (TCs) of lead concentrate improved their margins. This capped the decline in overall production in September. SMM assessed that quotes of the monthly TCs for domestic Pb 50% lead concentrate have climbed to 1,900-2,100 yuan/mt on metal content basis.
For October, China’s primary lead market is likely to see a rebound of around 10,000 mt in production as environmental cutbacks were lifted in Henan and as Henan Yuguang, Xing’an Silver & Lead, and Yunnan Mengzi will conclude maintenance. Scheduled overhaul at Henan Wanyang will limitedly impact production in October.