In 2019, China's aluminum industry continued to adhere to the supply-side structural reform, strictly controlled the new capacity of electrolytic aluminum, strictly implemented the capacity replacement policy, the production situation of the industry was good, and the efficiency of the smelting industry was greatly improved, but the price continued to fluctuate and the pressure on the international trade situation increased.
First, the output of smelting products fell slightly, and aluminum prices continued to fluctuate and fall. In 2019, the output of alumina and electrolytic aluminum was 72.47 million tons and 35.04 million tons respectively, down 1% and 0.9% respectively over the same period last year, and the output of aluminum products was 52.52 million tons, an increase of 7.5% over the same period last year. Aluminum prices continued a weak and volatile trend, with the spot price for the whole year averaging RMB13960/ ton, down 2.1% from the same period last year.
Second, the profits of the smelting industry have improved significantly, driving the efficiency of the aluminum industry to stabilize. In 2019, the profits of aluminum enterprises in Shanghai reached RMB40.1 billion, an increase of 3.1% over the same period last year, of which the profits of mining, dressing and processing of bauxite were RMB180 million and RMB19.5 billion, down 75% and 2.1% from the same period last year.
For the whole year, the production capacity of electrolytic aluminum was released less than expected, and occasional events such as natural disasters and safety accidents reduced production, alleviated the contradiction between supply and demand, reduced major production costs such as electricity, alumina and carbon anodes, and made a profit of 20.5 billion yuan in aluminum smelting, an increase of 11.7 percent over the same period last year, which has become the main factor driving the efficiency of the aluminum industry to improve.
Third, the import volume of bauxite increased significantly, and the export volume and price of aluminum fell. In 2019, the total import and export trade of aluminum products was US $26.3 billion, down 5% from the same period last year, of which imports were US $10.7 billion, up 2.5% from the same period last year, and export trade was US $15.6 billion, down 10.4% from the same period last. The supply of overseas bauxite continued to increase, with imports exceeding 100 million tons in 2001, an increase of 21.9% over the same period last year. For the whole year, aluminum exports were 5.15 million tons, down 1.6% from the same period last year, the total export volume was down 7.2%, and the unit price of aluminum exports fell 5.7% year-on-year, showing a downward trend in both volume and price.
Fourth, the transformation and upgrading has been accelerated, and the risk of excess alumina has been intensified. The electrolytic aluminum industry strictly implements the policy of capacity replacement and accelerates the transfer to Yunnan, Inner Mongolia and other regions. The high-temperature electric bag composite dust removal technology for alumina production has made a major breakthrough, achieving particulate matter emissions below 5mg/m3, and the emission concentration has been reduced by 95% compared with the same period last year. Affected by the loose supply of overseas bauxite, the expansion of alumina production capacity accelerated, and the completed capacity exceeded 87 million tons by the end of 2019, further aggravating the risk of overcapacity.
In 2020, the risk of overcapacity in the aluminum industry still exists, downstream consumption is not optimistic, the international trade situation is complex and changeable, and the stable operation of the industry is still under pressure. the whole industry will continue to deepen supply-side structural reform in accordance with the requirements of the Central Economic work Conference, carry out standardized management of the aluminum industry, strengthen industry self-discipline, strictly control the new production capacity of electrolytic aluminum, strictly implement the replacement of electrolytic aluminum production capacity, and curb the disorderly expansion of alumina production capacity. Increase the intensity of intelligent and green transformation, speed up the development and application of aviation aluminum and automotive aluminum energy high-end products, constantly expand aluminum application, and promote the high-quality development of the industry.
Contact Person: Mr. James Wong
Tel: 0086 186 6296 3676