The People’s Republic of China saw a 7.9-percent rise on the year of primary aluminium last month, reaching a total of 3.16 million metric tons according to the National Bureau of Statistics’ numbers released yesterday.
Experts chalk up the increase to new capacity coming online over the summer, which pushed the daily average to a new record high of 105,333 metric tons. Per Antaike, 375 thousand metric tons per annum of new aluminium-smelting production came online last month, with another 160 thousand metric tons per annum of previously-shuttered capacity restarting during the same time period. A rise in prices for the metal also helped push production higher.
Though up for the year, last month’s production was off from August’s total, which was a record of 3.171 million metric tons over one more day than September. Prices for the versatile metal continue to trend upward from a bottoming-out due to the global coronavirus pandemic and the resulting economic downturn. Demand is clawing back, leading to prices hitting a 2-1/2 year high yesterday in Shanghai.
Through the year’s first three quarters the Middle Kingdom churned out 27.45 million metric tons, a rise of 2.8 percent on the year. Production is on track to thunder back from a year-on-year drop in 2019 to a new record in 2020.
According to CRU analyst Wan Ling, both China Hongqiao and Yunnan Aluminium brought new projects online last month, both of which are housed in Yunnan’s Wenshan region.
“(September production rose) due to the ramp up of new capacities in Yunnan and Sichuan,” Wan explained to Reuters earlier this week.
Wan continued by estimating an aluminium production in the year’s closing quarter of 9.404 million metric tons. Between new capacity coming online and shuttered capacity restarting in the quarter, the total would represent a jump of 7.1 percent on the year and 1.5 percent on the quarter.