SHANGHAI, Feb 3 (SMM) – China’s imports of Indonesian nickel ore jumped by nearly three-quarters in 2019, according to data from China Customs, as Chinese traders stepped up their purchases before the Indonesian mineral export ban took effect in 2020.
Customs data show that China's nickel ore imports in 2019 increased 30% from a year earlier to stand at 56.13 million mt in 2019, with materials from Indonesia accounting for 23.9 million mt, up 72% on the year.
The world’s top nickel ore producer Indonesia has implemented an export ban on nickel ore from January 1, 2020 to ensure the mineral supply in its domestic processing industry.
Customs data also indicated that China’s nickel ore imports expanded 60% year on year to 4.32 million mt in December, with imports from Indonesia increasing 82% to 2.47 million mt. But the total import volumes in December were 26% lower from November.
Separately, China took 15.4 million mt of nickel ore from the Philippine in December, up 24% from a year ago.