HKEX launches spot aluminium trading on mainland China platform

Qianhai Mercantile Exchange (QME), a mainland China physical commodities bourse owned by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd (HKEX), has started spot trading of aluminium ingots and billets, HKEX said on Tuesday.

Trading started on Friday, June 28, with six Chinese companies, including a unit of state-run Chalco, trading 437.76 tonnes of the two products with a total turnover of 6.2 million yuan ($901,791.95).

The transactions “helped record the first benchmark prices of aluminium ingot and aluminium billet based on actual transactions on the QME platform,” HKEX, which also owns the London Metal Exchange, said in an email.

The QME, located just 50 kms (30 miles) from Hong Kong, brings much-coveted access to the world’s biggest metals market for HKEX, which is also pursuing LME warehousing in mainland China.

The launch was slightly earlier than planned. HKEX Chief Executive Charles Li said in May that aluminium product trading was planned for the third quarter. Li also said QME copper trading would probably begin in 2020.

The first product to launch on the QME was alumina, the substance used to make aluminium, in October last year.

($1 = 6.8752 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(By Tom Daly; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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