Chilean copper prices are not likely to rebound until the coronavirus outbreak in China stabilises, the Chilean Copper Commission (Cochilco) said on Feb 14, with its price at CLP260.2/lb, a drop of 1.5pc from the week ending Feb 7.
On Jan 24, a day before China’s Lunar New Year, Chile’s copper price was CLP270.7/lb
The commission stated that refined copper inventories in China stood at an 11-month-high due to current logistical limitations.
In the two-week-period ending Feb 14, copper stocks at the Shanghai Futures Exchange increased by 107,000mt, or 69pc, to 263,000mt.
The official three-month LME copper contract dropped by $742/mt, from $6,330/mt on Jan 16 to $5,588/mt on Jan 31.
LME copper has inched up by $170/mt in the last two weeks, as China slowly resumes smelting operations.
Chile is a major producer of copper and China is the world’s top consumer.
Chile’s exports of copper ores and concentrates to China in 2019 were 7,729,225, up by 33.07pc from 2018.