A fifth of copper smelting capacity suspended in May, data shows

Credit: Earth-i

About a fifth of global copper smelting capacity was suspended in May, mostly for maintenance, data from satellite surveillance of metal processing plants showed.

Earth-i, which specialises in observational data, tracks smelters representing up to 90% of global production for its SAVANT service and sells data to fund managers, traders and miners.

The company said that an average of 20.8% of global copper smelter capacity monitored was inactive in May compared with 17.4% in the same month last year.

“Global inactivity reached 25.4% on 8th May… with seasonal maintenance closures remaining a key feature,” Earth-i said in a statement.

In China, three smelters that were closed for maintenance at the end of April have resumed activities while Xingguang Copper, Shandong Fangyuan and Hunchun are now shut, it added.

The Chinese-owned Lualaba smelter in the Democratic Republic of Congo also appeared to be closed for maintenance, Earth-i said.

(By Eric Onstad; Editing by Jason Neely)


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