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China imports 6.97 million tonnes of bauxite in October

China imported 6.97 million tonnes of bauxite in October, retreating from a record high in the previous month, according to the customs data.

The October imports were down 8.1% from September, when it hit 7.59 million tonnes and more than three times the volumes for the same month last year.

“While alumina sales have been very good in China recently, raw material inventory has been high with alumina producers and many are sitting on 4-6 months’ inventory, much longer than the usual two months,” Xiao Lanlan, an analyst at Huatai Great Wall Futures in Shanghai, said.

As a result, alumina producers may have less enthusiasm this year for the year-end raw material stocking in the coming months, according to Wang.

“It seems less likely for Indonesia to completely ban bauxite exports next year, as the country will have elections in 2014 and there are no downstream smelters in the country for aluminium,” Wang Rong, an analyst at Guotai Junan Futures in Shanghai, said.

October alumina imports were 460,459 tonnes, up 24.95% year-on-year and up 2.2% month-on-month, which analysts attributed to normal fluctuation and robust demand from emerging aluminium smelters in west part of China.

In October, China imported 49,798 tonnes of aluminium, up 1.8% year-on-year, down 7.7% from the previous month.

Aluminium exports were 9,296 tonnes, up 112% year-on-year, down 22.3% month-on-month.

Secondary aluminium imports rose 2.36% year-on-year and fell 12.1% to 208,908 tonnes in October.

In the first 10 months, China imported 60.3 million tonnes of bauxite, up 85.9% year-on-year. Alumina imports totaled 2.94 million tonnes, down 28.2% year-on-year.


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