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SRB set to bid for aluminum Wednesday; no word on copper

Keywords: Tags  China State Reserve Bureau, aluminum, aluminum tender, Aluminum Corp. of China, Chalco, SRB

SHANGHAI — China’s State Reserve Bureau (SRB) will meet Wednesday in Beijing to bid for aluminum from Aluminum Corp. of China Ltd. (Chalco) and its affiliates, market sources said.

Purchase prices will be set that day, and quantities will be capped at 400,000 tonnes, as previously rumored, two sources told AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin on Monday.

But aluminum tags won’t rise much, they said.

"(The SRB buys will be) no use, given that Chalco’s cost of production is way above 16,000 yuan ($2,543 per tonne), and 400,000 tonnes is such a small amount," one source said.

Output costs at China’s private aluminum smelters, which are excluded from SRB’s tenders, can be as low as 12,000 yuan ($1,925) per tonne, she added.

"SRB’s budget for stockpiling has come from government finance and has got to be spent, even for things that some people might think were not worthwhile," one market participant in Beijing said.

Ningxia Qingtongxia Energy Aluminium Group, the other state-owned aluminum producer, might also attend Wednesday’s tender.

But there has been no confirmation that the SRB will also stockpile copper, market participants said.

A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin.

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