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Chinese Alumina Production in January Dips YoY

Metal News - Published on Wed, 19 Feb 2020

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China produced 5.81 million tonnes of alumina in January, with metallurgical-grade materials accounting for 5.56 million tonnes. Last month, production of metallurgical-grade alumina averaged 179,000 tonnes per day, down 9.36% from January 2019 and 1.12% from December as Guangxi Xinfa reduced its annualised capacity in operation to 1.8-2 million tonnes on market factors.

The recent epidemic outbreak has significantly slowed road transport in China’s northern regions, such as Henan, Shanxi, Shandong and Inner Mongolia, tightening raw material supply at some alumina refineries. In Shanxi, Huaqing and Aokaida have scaled back operations, while Xinfa’s plant in Xiaoyi shut down a roaster. Xing’an Chemical halted a low-temperature line with designed capacity of 650,000 tonnes per year, as disrupted road transport from the port lowered its stocks of imported bauxite. Xinfa’s plant in Chiping, Shandong has also closed a roaster. In southwest China including Guizhou, Guangxi, and Chongqing, alumina refineries keep their capacity in operation barely changed from levels seen at the end of January. Feedstock inventories are able to meet production demand as the virus impact on local transportation was limited. Some firms, such as Chongqing Bosai, saw their inventories of finished products higher than the pre-holiday level due to slow shipments. Jingxi Tiangui started batch charging to produce aluminium hydroxide in mid-January, and did not yield alumina in January. Its alumina output in February will depend on the production of aluminium hydroxide.

As of early February, metallurgical-grade alumina capacity in operation declined to 64.41 million tonnes on an annualised basis, with the coronavirus outbreak affecting 1.8 million tonnes of capacity (including the impact of the shutdown of roasters). SMM estimates China’s production of metallurgical-grade alumina at 5.12 million tonnes in February, with the daily output falling to 176,000 tonnes.

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Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Wed, 19 Feb 2020
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