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China July aluminium exports rise despite US trade row; steel shipments slide

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China's monthly aluminium exports rose to their second-highest level on record in July, as a weaker yuan and a still-favourable price arbitrage to international markets outweighed the imposition of US import tariffs and growing trade tensions.

[BEIJING] China's monthly aluminium exports rose to their second-highest level on record in July, as a weaker yuan and a still-favourable price arbitrage to international markets outweighed the imposition of US import tariffs and growing trade tensions.

China's unwrought aluminium and aluminium product exports came in at 519,000 tonnes last month, the General Administration of Customs said on Wednesday.

That was up 1.8 per cent from 510,000 tonnes in June, previously the second-highest figure on record, and up 18 per cent from 440,000 tonnes in July 2017.

Meanwhile China's steel product exports came in at 5.89 million tonnes in July, customs said. The figure was down 15 percent from 6.94 million tonnes in June, the highest in 11 months, and down the same percentage from 6.96 million tonnes in July last year.

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China is the world's top producer of steel and aluminium, which have been subject to 25 per cent and 10 per cent import tariffs, respectively, in the United States, since March 23.

Many steel and aluminium products were also included in a list of US$200 billion worth of Chinese goods on which the United States has threatened to impose higher tariffs from September.

Elsewhere, tight checks by customs to halt the smuggling of scrap steel to Southeast Asia have forced some Chinese steel exporters to cancel or delay shipments, benefiting rival exporting-countries like Russia.

REUTERS