This Morning in Metals: U.S. steel imports down 19%

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This morning in metals news: U.S. steel imports for the year through July fell 19%; Zambia is looking to take over Glencore copper mines in the country; and Brazil’s Vale has opened an iron ore grinding hub in China.

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Steel imports down 19%

U.S. imports of steel through July were down 19% year over year, according to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI).

In July alone, however, imports reached 2.69 million net tons, or up 92% from the previous month.

Zambia eyes Glencore’s Mopani Copper Mines

According to Reuters, the Zambian government wants to take a controlling stake in Glencore’s Mopani Copper Mines in the country.

The country’s mines minister Tuesday said Zambia’s mining investment arm is looking for a controlling stake in the mines. ZCCM-IH, the investment arm, currently has a 10% stake, Reuters reported.

Vale opens new iron ore facility in China

As China’s demand for steel and steelmaking materials remains high, Brazilian firm Vale has reportedly opened its first iron ore grinding hub in China.

Vale and Ningbo Zhoushan Port Group celebrated the inauguration of the new Shulanghu Grinding Hub on Tuesday.

“Located in the Shulanghu Ore Transfer Terminal, in Zhoushan City, Zhejiang Province, the Grinding Hub is the first grinding hub of Vale in China, having three production lines and totaling a nominal capacity of 3 million tons per year,” Vale said.

Furthermore, the first product to be produced at the facility will be a high-grade ground iron ore fine called GF88.

“Vale is enriching its product portfolio to better meet China’s increasing demand for quality, environmental performance and innovation in a new era,” said Marcello Spinelli, Vale’s executive director of ferrous minerals. “GF88 is a truly ‘green’ mineral product.”

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