On January 30, the China Non-ferrous Metals Industry Association held a press conference on the operation of the non-ferrous metals industry in 2023 in the form of video. Chen Xuesen, member of the Standing Committee of the Party Committee, Vice President and spokesman of the Non-ferrous Metals Association, briefed the economic operation of the non-ferrous metals industry in 2023, and answered the questions of media journalists and business representatives.
The year 2023 will be the first year to fully implement the spirit of the Party's 20 National Congress and a year for economic recovery after three years of COVID-19 prevention and control. We actively responded to the impact of a grim external environment, a decline in exports, a slowdown in traditional consumption, and large price fluctuations on industrial operations. We worked hard to optimize the industrial structure, forestall and defuse risks, made solid progress in high-quality development, and became increasingly stable and sound.
In 2023, the industrial added value of non-ferrous metal enterprises increased by 7.4% over the previous year, an increase of 2.2 percentage points over the previous year, and 2.8 percentage points higher than the industrial added value of national enterprises. Since the new coronavirus epidemic, the industrial added value of non-ferrous metal enterprises has shown a stable recovery trend, increasing by 2.1% in 2020, 3.1% in 2021, 5.2% in 2022, and 7.4% in 2023.
Chen Xuesen elaborated on the seven highlights of the development of non-ferrous metals industry in 2023.
The output of ten non-ferrous metal products exceeded 70 million tons for the first time
According to preliminary statistics, the output of ten commonly used non-ferrous metals in China in 2023 was 74.698,000 tons, an increase of 7.1% over the previous year according to comparable caliber calculation (the same below). By quarter, 18.098 million tons in the first quarter; 18.285 million tons in the second quarter, 18.634 million tons in the third quarter, and 19.683 million tons in the fourth quarter, showing an increase quarter by quarter. In 2023, the capacity utilization rate of non-ferrous metal smelting and rolling processing industry was 79.5%, an increase of 0.2 percentage points over the previous year and 4.2 percentage points higher than the capacity utilization rate of the national industrial manufacturing industry.
Non-ferrous metal industry investment growth reached a record high in the past decade
In 2023, the fixed asset investment of the non-ferrous metal industry increased by 17.3% over the previous year, 2.8 percentage points higher than the growth rate of the previous year, 8.3 percentage points higher than the growth rate of the national industrial fixed asset investment. In 2023, investment in fixed assets after mining and processing of non-ferrous metals will increase by 42.7%, and investment in fixed assets after smelting and rolling processing will increase by 12.5%. In 2023, the investment in non-ferrous metal materials required by photovoltaic, wind power, power and energy storage batteries, new energy vehicles and non-ferrous metal mines has increased rapidly, which is an important factor driving the growth of fixed asset investment in non-ferrous metals industry. Since the new coronavirus epidemic, the growth rate of fixed asset investment completed by the non-ferrous metal industry is: an increase of -1.0% in 2020, an increase of 4.1% in 2021, an increase of 14.5% in 2022, and an increase of 17.3% in 2023, which is a record high in the past decade.
The import of traditional mining raw materials maintained growth and the decline of main export products narrowed
In 2023, China's non-ferrous metal import and export trade totaled 331.54 billion US dollars, (according to comparable caliber calculation, the same below) an increase of 1.5%. Specifically, the value of imports was 271.94 billion US dollars, up by 4.3%; Exports amounted to 59.61 billion US dollars, down 9.8%.
In 2023, the physical import volume of copper concentrate was 27.536 million tons, an increase of 9.1% over the previous year, and the import volume of unforged rolled copper and copper materials was 5.48 million tons, a decrease of 6.2% over the previous year. In 2023, the physical import volume of bauxite was 141.38 million tons, an increase of 12.9% over the previous year, and the export volume of unforged rolled aluminum and aluminum was 5.675 million tons, down 13.9% over the previous year, but the decline was 1.5 percentage points narrower than the first three quarters and 6.1 percentage points narrower than the first half of the year.
Non-ferrous metal varieties price trend differentiation
First, the price fluctuation of the main commonly used non-ferrous metals is less than that of new energy metals. Copper prices are up slightly from a year ago. Aluminum price declines continued to narrow. Industrial silicon prices fell, but showed signs of stopping by the end of the year. Battery grade lithium carbonate prices fell sharply.
Second, the price of major non-ferrous metals in the domestic market is stronger than the international market.
Third, the spot price of major non-ferrous metals is better than the futures price.
Non-ferrous metal enterprises to achieve profits from the decline to increase overall more than the previous year's level
In 2023, the total profit of non-ferrous metal industrial enterprises reached 371.61 billion yuan, an increase of 23.2% over the previous year (calculated according to comparable caliber, the same below). Among them, the total profit of non-ferrous metal industrial enterprises in the fourth quarter was 163.08 billion yuan, an increase of 88.2%. Among the annual profits, the profit of independent mining enterprises reached 78.57 billion yuan, an increase of 8.1 percent; the profit of smelting enterprises reached 186.90 billion yuan, an increase of 23.1 percent; and the profit of processing enterprises reached 106.15 billion yuan, an increase of 37.6 percent. The cost of 100 yuan of operating income was 94.64 yuan, down 0.31 yuan from the previous year.
Photovoltaic, wind power, new energy vehicles, power and energy storage batteries and other rapidly developing industries have become the growth point of non-ferrous metal consumption
In 2023, China's output of photovoltaic, wind power, new energy vehicles, power and energy storage batteries, domestic new energy installed capacity, and the export volume of products in the above areas have increased significantly, becoming the main growth area of non-ferrous metal consumption such as copper, aluminum, zinc. It is estimated that the above-mentioned industries will consume about 3 million tons of copper in 2023, an increase of 52% over the previous year, accounting for about 19% of the national copper consumption; The above industries consumed about 9 million tons of aluminum, an increase of 50% over the previous year, accounting for nearly 20% of the country's aluminum consumption; In 2023, the galvanized consumption of steel structure equipment such as wind power tower tubes, bolts and photovoltaic steel supports is about 700,000 tons, an increase of 51% over the previous year, accounting for about 9% of the national zinc consumption.
Outstanding achievements in international cooperation Zijin Mining Group mine copper output for the first time broke one million tons
In recent years, domestic non-ferrous metal enterprises have made remarkable achievements in the development of domestic and foreign resources, and the amount and output of major non-ferrous metal equity resources such as copper, aluminum, nickel, cobalt and lithium have increased significantly. Among many domestic enterprises, what is especially gratifying is that Fujian Zijin Mining Group achieved the mine copper production of 1.01 million tons for the first time in 2023, which is the only enterprise in China that has broken the one million mark of mineral copper, ranking among the top five in the world and entering the first square of global mining companies, making a historic breakthrough in the global resource competition for Chinese non-ferrous metal mining enterprises. It is gratifying to realize the development goals that the non-ferrous metal industry has been dreaming of for many years.
Looking ahead to the non-ferrous industry in 2024, Chen Xuesen said that a series of stable growth policies introduced in 2023 will continue to be effective in 2024, the potential of service consumption will continue to be released, high-tech and private manufacturing will support rapid economic growth, and the endogenous growth momentum of the economy will be further enhanced. However, we must also see that the economic operation in 2024 still faces some internal and external challenges. Internationally, the complexity, severity and uncertainty of the external environment are on the rise, geopolitical conflicts are intensifying, world economic growth is slowing down, and there are uncertainties in the adjustment of interest rates in developed economies. Spillover risks may still impact emerging market economies through exchange rates, capital flows, foreign debt and other channels. From the domestic perspective, the traditional consumer real estate supply and demand relationship of non-ferrous metals and other bulk raw materials has undergone major changes, and the growth rate of the new economy may slow down.
Chen Xuesen said that in the face of the current economic situation at home and abroad, the non-ferrous metals industry will earnestly implement a series of policies issued by the Party Central Committee and The State Council, and solidly promote the stable and rapid development of the non-ferrous metals industry in 2024. He predicted the main indicators of the non-ferrous metal industry in 2024 as follows: The increase in the added value of the non-ferrous metal industry in 2024 remains above 5.5% and is expected to reach 6%. According to the new caliber statistics of ten commonly used non-ferrous metals production growth rate remained at about 5%. It is expected that the consumption of non-ferrous metals in the real estate field will continue to slow down in 2024, but photovoltaic, wind power, power and energy storage batteries, new energy vehicles and lightweight transportation vehicles are still the main growth points of non-ferrous metal consumption. In 2024, the growth rate of fixed asset investment in the non-ferrous metals industry will be maintained at about 10%. In 2024, China's aluminum exports are expected to continue to stabilize, and imports of copper concentrate and bauxite will maintain steady growth. In the first quarter of 2024, the price of non-ferrous metals will fluctuate mainly at the current price, the price of copper and aluminum metals is expected to recover slightly in the second half of the year, and industrial silicon and lithium carbonate are expected to fluctuate in a reasonable price range.