SHANGHAI, Mar 16 (SMM) – The average operating rate of lead concentrate mines in the new SMM sample stood at 42.3% in February, up 8.6 percentage points MoM and 6 percentage points YoY.
According to SMM research, most lead-zinc mines resumed mining activities in early February, but dressing activities did not resume until mid-to-late February. This year’s Chinese New Year (CNY) holiday came one month earlier than last year, driving the output of lead concentrates to increase significantly on a year-on-year basis in February 2023. Most mines held back their lead concentrates in February due to unstable production.
Entering March, the production of mines continued to resume, but at a slower pace. Some mines have postponed their production resumption plans due to the National People's Congress and the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (short as “Two Sessions”), as well as tightening safety checks in the wake of a severe open-pit mine accident in Inner Mongolia. Therefore, SMM expects that China’s lead concentrate production will only see limited growth in March.