China buys indium for state stockpile

Dec 19, 2008 | 05:35 AM | Kieran Leahy

The Chinese government bought 30 tonnes of indium from domestic producers last week and might look to buy copper from the international market as it starts to rebuild its strategic stockpiles, according to market sources.

China's State Reserve Bureau (SRB), a secretive government body that maintains stockpiles of metals and other commodities, bought the indium Thursday from Huludao Zinc Industry Co. Ltd., one of the country's top producers, sources said, adding that it could buy up to a further 170 tonnes of indium next year and beyond.

"From a reliable source, the Chinese government company is buying . . . it is buying not a small quantity, and such buying will continue," one Chinese trading source said.

Prices of indium have fallen in recent months, but that wasn't believed to be a major factor in SRB's decision to step into the market.....

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