In August, global aluminium production hit a peak, reaching an annual rate of 71.2 million metric tons, marking the second consecutive month above 70 million. China, the largest global producer, is experiencing a production surge due to improved power supply.
However, concerns linger regarding whether Chinese demand can match this upsurge. The International Aluminium Institute (IAI) adjusted its primary production figures, indicating an increase in output both in China and globally.
China’s Aluminium Production Surge and its Implications
Chinese aluminium production had initially dipped due to power reductions in hydro-powered provinces. Still, it has rebounded with improved electricity supply during the rainy season.
The annualized run-rate in China hit a new high of 42.4 million tons in August, nearing the capacity limit set on the sector. On the demand side, Chinese consumers appear to be absorbing the additional metal without a significant increase in visible inventories.
Notably, exports of aluminium products have reduced, suggesting strong domestic off-take. However, with production continuing to rise, China’s appetite for aluminium will be tested.