SMM, May 20:
According to SMM, China's total nickel mine imports in April were 1.3591 million tons, down 87100 tons from March, 6 per cent lower than the previous month, and 70.2 per cent lower than a year earlier.
Imports from the Philippines were 1.088 million tons, up 11.6% from the previous month, down 54.8% from the same period last year. Affected by the epidemic, although the rainy season in the Suligao region of the Philippines was over in April, it was still unable to ship goods, resulting in a significant drop in imports in April compared with the same period last year. Nickel ore exports gradually resumed in May and are expected to fully return to normal in June. The import volume from Xinka is 125300 tons, an increase of 5.5% over the previous month. Xinka's import volume is stable, basically medium-to-high quality, low water content, and good quality of nickel ore. Guatemala imported 15900 tons this month, with a cumulative import volume of 68200 tons in 2020 and no imports for the whole of 19 years. SMM predicts that nickel mine imports will pick up slightly in May, mainly due to the gradual lifting of the ban on Philippine mining areas in May, and the physical export volume may still have a slight decline compared with the same period last year. In addition, since the beginning of this year, there is no high-quality ore available in the Philippines, the grade of nickel ore has dropped more, and the export volume of metal has declined more or more from the same period last year.
(note: customs data do not distinguish between dry and wet tons)
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