The latest metal supply news from around the world.
Metalex is home to all the metal supplies you could possibly need. Whether it’s 6061 t6 plate, brass flat bar cz121 or anything else, we’re likely to stock it. As popular aluminium stockholders and metals supply experts, we like to keep our finger on the pulse of the world’s metal markets. This time around there are dramatic changes in the wind, and most of them are positive. Here’s another glimpse into our world.
Aluminium prices slashed thanks to Russia’s tax change
Russia’s 15% export tax on primary aluminium exports led to extra charges of at least $254 a tonne. Now it looks like Russia will remove taxes on aluminium exports before long. A boom in global supplies has driven an almighty sell-off of the country’s aluminium inventory, which in turn has dramatically cut the price of the metal on the European and US markets. Around 1 million tonnes of aluminium were drawn down in Europe, along with about half a million tonnes in the USA, and the word on the street is prices are highly likely to fall again.
Is there a looming shortage of aluminium for packaging?
Apparently China’s severe power rationing has ‘drastically reduced’ exports of magnesium to the EU, which could mean we’ll see a shortage of aluminium used for packaging. Experts fear reduced exports to Europe could mean production stoppages affecting the vehicle manufacture sector as well.
Japan asks USA to end extra tariffs on steel imports
Japan’s trade minister has asked the USA to remove extra tariffs on steel and aluminium imports at an online meeting with Washington’s trade representative. He asked for a resolution to the hugely unpopular tariffs on Japanese steel and aluminium products under Section 232 of the US Trade Expansion Act, after the USA and EU agreed to end the ongoing dispute. The ultimate aim is to create a worldwide collaboration designed to fight ‘dirty’ production standards and deal with industry overcapacity.
US and EU seal a peace deal over Trump-era tariffs
Steel and aluminium producers are heaving a sigh of relief thanks to the end of 2018’s Trump-era tariffs on steel and aluminium. The new agreement means duty-free access for limited amounts to EU-made metals is allowed once more, fending off the retaliatory EU tariffs that were due to come into play during December.
The new deal will maintain US section 232 tariffs of 25% on steel and 10% aluminium, letting ‘limited volumes’ of EU-produced aluminium and steel enter the USA without paying duty. All this finally frees up both parties to create a new global trade agreement to deal with excess steel and aluminium capacity while cutting CO2 emissions. President Joe Biden said a new agreement would crack down on the ‘dirty steel’ manufacturing methods that emit far too much CO2.
Rotherham’s Liberty Steel plant re-opens at night
Liberty Steel in Rotherham is relaunching production at night to save energy, against a tricky landscape of ‘soaring’ energy costs. Their huge electric arc furnace has been re-started and will run between 11pm and 6am when energy costs are slightly lower. The news follows a £50m cash injection designed to help re-open the plants at Aldwarke and Stocksbridge and restart production, both having been closed temporarily after Greensill went under in March.
Why isn’t HS2 being built with British steel?
It’s an important – and pretty awkward – question: Why is the Government-owned business responsible for HS2 using French reinforcing steel for its tunnels? Why aren’t they using British steel? We don’t know the answer.
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