China – Figures from the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association (CMRA) show that the country’s non-ferrous imports and exports were only 8.7% higher by value in January and February than in the same period last year.
The total trade value was US$ 24.7 billion during the first two months of 2012, representing a 20.5% fall in the import and export growth rate for the sector. The comparable growth rate for 2011 was 30%, with China’s non-ferrous trade for the full year totalling US$ 160 billion. CMRA Chairman Chen Quanxun described the early 2012 data as ‘a gloomy sign for the economy’.
According to the association’s Secretary General, Jia Mingxing, the sharp decline was caused by falls in both domestic output and overseas demand, together with an increasing number of trade disputes in the industry.
‘The world’s economic recovery remains weak, which will greatly influence the non-ferrous metals industry this year,’ explained Mr Chen. He emphasised that competition in the industry in the international market was ‘getting fierce’, while new emerging economies were developing rapidly.
Mr Jia predicted that domestic demand and non-ferrous metals production would ‘increase steadily’ through the rest of this year, while import and export volumes would follow but at a notably slower pace.
The CMRA, supported by China’s National Bureau of Statistics, is preparing the country’s first composite index of all non-ferrous metals. It is hoped the index, set to be introduced by the end of this year, will clarify economic trends and help the industry to avoid external threats.
For more information, visit: www.cmra.cn/en