All work has stopped at Freeport-McMoran‘s giant Grasberg copper mine in Indonesia, just over a month after the country halted exports of copper concentrate to boost domestic industries.
Freeport had said the suspension would require the mine to slash output by 60% to approximately 70 million pounds of metal per month if it did not get an export permit by mid-February, due to limited storage. A strike at Freeport’s sole domestic taker of copper concentrate, PT Smelting is expected to last at least until March and has limited Freeport’s output options as Grasberg’s storage sites are now full.
Nippon Exec: Chinese Steel Prices Will Hold Firm
Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp., Japan’s biggest steelmaker, expects steel prices in top consumer China to hold firm at least until its Communist Party congress late this year, amid solid demand that is underpinning coking coal and iron ore markets.
Chinese futures contracts for steel rebar used in construction have already risen 17% in 2017, on top of a gain of more than 60% last year