SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): Chilean state-owned mining giant Codelco announced plans to cut shipments of refined copper to China in 2023, due to extended outages at its smelters and robust demand from other countries in the world.
The shipments to customers under annual contracts for 2023 will be reduced by nearly 10%, corresponding to anticipated decline in refined metal production by the company. The final figure is yet to be confirmed, as negotiations are still on. The miner is expected to lower the number of spot sales to China, as it expects robust demand emerging from other regions including Europe and North America.
Codelco is feared to lose its spot as world’s topmost copper producer this year. During the initial three quarters of the current year, the production has registered notable decline by almost 10% over the prior year. The extended maintenance outage at two of its key smelters- Ventanas and Chuquicamata, has contributed to bulk of the production decline. It must be noted that Codelco had lowered its 2022 output targets in October, for the second time in three months.
The move by Codelco to cut sales to China has come as a big blow for Chinese buyers. China has been witnessing tight refined copper market in recent months, following troubles with domestic smelting.