SHANGHAI, Nov 12 (SMM) – China’s imports of unwrought, non-alloyed nickel dropped 53% from a month ago and 29% from a year ago to stand at 13,300 mt in September, showed SMM calculations based on data from China Customs.
The lion’s share of about 8,400 mt of those imports were parked in bonded warehouses, and only 4,865 mt entered domestic spot markets, down 33% month on month due to heavy import losses.
For the first nine months of 2019, China’s imports of unwrought, non-alloyed nickel reached 158,200 mt, down 9% from the same period a year earlier.
Imports are expected to remain light in October and pick up in November, as the import arbitrage window remained closed in the second half of September and early October, and reopened in early November.
China’s imports of unwrought, non-alloyed nickel are estimated to grow to 14,000-15,000 mt this month, with gains capped by tight availability overseas.