Indonesia’s Ban Will Hurt Chinese Stainless Steel Factories

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The raw materials export ban in Indonesian “is set to hurt Chinese factories making stainless steel – used in everything from kitchenware to cars and buildings – in the biggest potential industry shake-up in more than five years,” reports Reuters.

“The ban, due to come in force on Sunday, may also be a boon for battered nickel miners, dogged by prices that lost 19 percent last year and are sitting stubbornly near four-year lows.”

“Indonesia looks set to prohibit more than $2 billion worth of annual nickel ore and bauxite shipments as part of a plan to push miners into downstream processing and boost long-term returns from its mineral wealth.”

“The Southeast Asian country supplies about half the nickel ore used for stainless steel in China, the world’s biggest producer and exporter of the corrosion resistant material.”

In metal price news for stainless steel and nickel…

On Thursday, January 9, the day’s biggest mover was the cash price of primary Indian nickel, which saw a 0.6 percent decline. The 3-month price of nickel saw a 0.3 percent decline on the LME to $13,500 per metric ton. The nickel spot price weakened by 0.3 percent on the LME, settling at $13,440 per metric ton.

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Chinese stainless steel prices were mixed for the day. The price of Chinese ferro-chrome continues to hover for the fifth day in a row. For the fifth consecutive day, the price of Chinese ferro-moly held flat.

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The price of Chinese primary nickel fell 0.2 percent. The price of Chinese 316 stainless coil continues to hover for the fifth day in a row. For the fifth day in a row, the price of Chinese 304 stainless coil remained essentially flat. The price of Chinese 316 stainless steel scrap was unchanged. The price of Chinese 304 stainless steel scrap saw little movement.