SHANGHAI, Jul 28 (SMM) – China’s nickel ore imports more than doubled in June compared to the previous month, as the top supplier—the Philippines—has shrugged off the impact from the COVID-19 lockdown measures.
China imported 3.45 million mt of nickel ore and concentrate last month, up 1.77 million mt, or 105.5% from May but down 17.1% from June 2019, according to data from China customs compiled and calculated by SMM.
Imports from the Philippines jumped 129% month on month but dipped 3.5% year on year to 3.07 million mt in June.
A recovery of supply from New Caledonia from adverse weather also contributed to the sharp increase in China’s nickel ore imports in June.
About 246,000 mt of nickel ore and concentrate imports to China last month came from New Caledonia, making the South Pacific Island Nation the second largest supplier of such materials to China. That was up 201.7% from a month earlier, and brought the tally for the first half of the year to 833,600 mt.
There were Indonesian nickel ore moving from bonded warehouses to China last month, which all were low-grade products and totalled 107,000 mt, down 31.6% from May.