China imported 90,000mt of copper scrap in November, down by 59pc from the same month in 2018, on strict scrap import quotas issued by Chinese environmental authorities.
Between January and November, there was 1.42mn mt of copper scrap shipped to China, down by 35pc, or 770,000mt, from the same 11-month period last year. Imports during the first half of t2019 were higher than they were during the second half of the year as a result of import restrictions on category 6 materials issued July.
China’s copper imports fell from 624,275mt during the third quarter of 2018 to 381,462mt over the same quarter this year. Between October and November, copper scrap imports fell further to 176,595mt from 390,808mt in the fourth quarter of 2018.
China issued its first batch of import quotas of 270,885mt for copper scrap for 2020 on Dec 20, 2019, compared to the ninth batch of 240,429mt for 2019, which was also the first batch for Category 6 materials. The import quotas are expected to decline even more over the remainder of 2019, as China aims to import zero waste by the end of 2020.