China’s Solid Waste and Chemicals Management Center recently announced the 13th batch of scrap import quotas for the 4th quarter of 2019, including 57,365 tons of copper scrap, 44,935 tons on aluminum scrap, 405,890 tons of scrap paper, and 610 tons of ferrous scrap. According to the CMRA’s summary, the copper scrap import quotas include 54,885 tons for “general trade” and 2,510 tons for “processing trade.” A total of 71 enterprises received approval for copper scrap imports along with 27 enterprises approved for aluminum scrap imports.
Macquarie Research reports that Chinese copper scrap consumption “…was limited in 2H because the quotas are assigned directly to end-users and fabricators, and imported scrap cannot be traded in the local market. Market expects local scrap copper supply to tighten in Q4, and everyone awaits details on the trade policy for 2020. Supply may improve in 2020, if policy allows certain category of scrap to be re-classified as 'resources' rather than 'waste'.”