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Key Takeaways from the 17 th SMM International Aluminium Industry Summit Regarding Aluminium Scrap Recycling and Secondary Aluminium Industry
Jul 22, 2022 11:10CST
Source:SMM
SHANGHAI, Jul 22 (SMM) - The development of China's secondary aluminium industry is accelerating

SHANGHAI, Jul 22 (SMM) - 
The development of China's secondary aluminium industry is accelerating 
1. China's secondary aluminium industry has developed rapidly, making China the world's largest secondary aluminium producer. In 2021, China's secondary aluminium output was 8 million mt, an increase of 10% over 2020. China accounted for 46% of the global secondary aluminium output in 2021, up 2 percentage points from 2020. 
2. The green and low-carbon characteristics of secondary aluminium are prominent, and are in line with the development direction of the circular economy. Secondary aluminium can utilise urban mine resources; its energy consumption is just 3-5% of that of primary aluminium; it can save water consumption by 8 mt when compared with primary aluminium.  
3. The structure of secondary aluminium raw materials has been adjusted, and domestic old aluminium scrap has become the main raw material.  Affected by tightening aluminium scrap import policy, China's aluminium scrap import volume has shown a downward trend since 2010. In 2020, 820,000 mt of aluminium scrap was imported, down 71% from 2010. The proportion of imported aluminium scrap in the raw material structure of secondary aluminium dropped from 50% in 2010 to 16% in 2020. At the same time, the domestic aluminium scrap recycling volume has grown rapidly, and its proportion in the secondary aluminium raw material structure has increased to 55%, which is estimated to rise to 70% in 2025. 
4. The supply of secondary aluminium increased significantly due to massive aluminium scrap recycling volume   As aluminium scrap recycling gains momentum, it is expected that China's recycling of old aluminium scrap will exceed 8 million mt by 2025, and the output of secondary aluminium will reach 11.5 million mt. 

China’s secondary aluminium industry still lags behind other countries  
 1. China's secondary aluminium industry started relatively late, and the recycling system of aluminium scrap is not yet perfect. In 2021, the proportion of secondary aluminium in China's aluminium supply was only 16%, far less than 40% in the United States. 
2. The recycling system is not yet perfect. The automobile industry is a key area of aluminium consumption in China, but the legal channels for automobile dismantling are limited.  Since 2000, the rapid development of China's automobile industry has created enormous resources for aluminium scrap recycling. From 2011 to 2021, the average annual growth rate of China's car ownership was 11%, and China's car ownership reached 302 million units in 2021. However, the development of China's automobile dismantling industry is relatively backward. Generally, the ratio of the number of retired vehicles to the number of vehicles in existence is 3-5% in developed countries, but is just 0.74% in China.

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