This Morning in Metals: Output, Profit Up for Chile’s Codelco in 2017

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This morning in metals news, 2017 was a good year for Chilean miner Codelco, the city of Handan in China has called for a 25% reduction in steel mill production and the impact on Mexico of a terminated North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

State Miner Says Profit, Output Rose Last Year

Codelco announced that its profits rose in 2017, a year in which it produced its second-largest output ever, Reuters reported.

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According to the report, the miner posted pre-tax earnings of $2.885 billion, six times its earnings in 2016.

Chinese City Calls for Steel Production Cuts

The city of Handan is ordering 25% production cuts to ease pollution from April to mid-November, Reuters reported.

The city is located in China’s Hebei province, which produces nearly a quarter of China’s steel.

What Could a Post-NAFTA World Mean for Mexico?

NAFTA has now been subject to seven rounds of talks dating back to last year; in that time, the agreement has rocked back and forth between cautious optimism and concerns that the plug could be pulled at any time on the 24-year-old agreement.

The trading partners (the U.S., Mexico and Canada) failing to reach an agreement is certainly a possibility. The impact of such an outcome on Mexican trade would be significant, Bloomberg Businessweek explained.

In 2016, 73.3% of Mexico’s total exports went to the U.S., according to the report. According to the analysis, Mexican manufacturing, retail and and real estate companies could be hit hardest by a world without NAFTA.

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In addition, the report cites an Oxford Economics estimate projecting a 4 percentage point decrease in the country’s GDP by 2022.

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