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|General Review Of Silicon Metal In 2006 And Its Outlook For New Year|
|= Preferential Treatment By Chinese Government Caused To Increase Exports Of Si-Met From China|
The Central Government of China has maintained to take a comparatively generous attitude for the policy to export silicon metal. Namely, the Government has enforced from the 1st November of 2006 to impose duties on exports of main commodities, including ferro-alloys, but silicon metal is out of the objective materials for this imposition.|
Manganese metal has been classified to be the same category as silicon metal but the duty of 15% has been imposed on export of Chinese manganese metal from the 1st November of 2006 but, nevertheless, silicon metal is out of this imposition.
Even as for the system to issue export license enforced from the 1st January of 2007 by the Central Government of China, silicon metal is not applied to this E/L system. There is a view in the market that the system to issue export license will become a milestone to shift to the quota system. The export of silicon metal from China has been applied to a preferential treatment, following an exception of the duty to be imposed on its export.
In the same case as that of Chinese electrolytic manganese metal which has dominated the world market, Chinese silicon metal has been sweeping over the world market with discounted prices. At present, the countries, where have been still continuing to export silicon metal, are only Russia, Brazil, Norway, South Africa and Australia but their influence put on the Asian market has retreated. It is thought that, after having cautiously ascertained a competitiveness for export held by respective item and an influence on market put by them, the Central Government of China has enforced twice to raise the duties on exports of ferro-alloys from China since last year, and it is a strange aspect that silicon metal has been excluded from the commodities to impose duties on its exports, although Chinese silicon metal is overwhelmingly competitive for export business.
By taking into account of a view that it will be inevitable for Chinese producers ( exporters ) of silicon metal to be imposed the duty on export of this metal from January of 2007, these producers made every effort to rise the price of silicon metal ( with 5.5.3 grade for aluminum alloy sector ) by US$100 per ton for shipments to Japan in January - March quarter of 2007. Consequently, they have succeeded in a rise of US$70 - 80 per ton from those fixed for the previous quarter ( October - December of 2006 ) and new prices have come to US$1,140 - 1,150 per ton CIF Japan for January - March quarter of 2007.
China exported approximately 600,000 tons of silicon metal in the calendar year ( January - December ) of 2006, having increased by 12% compared with that ( 536,000 tons ) in the preceding year of 2005. The quantities of silicon metal exported from China in the last 6 years were <> 2001 : 322,000 tons, <> 2002 : 387,000 tons, <> 2003 : 491,000 tons, <> 2004 : 545,000 tons, <> 2005 : 536,000 tons and <> 2006 : 600,000 tons.
On the other hand, the producers of silicon metal in Europe and the USA have had a probability to take the offensive for filing an appeal for dumping of Chinese silicon metal and, in order to be cautious of this movement, Brazilian producers have been restricting their export of silicon metal for the USA. The US Government has reduced from November of 2006 the antidumping duties imposed on import of Brazilian silicon metal to 91.06 - 93.2% but Brazilian producers have still kept an anxiety for this action. The capacity to produce silicon metal in Brazil is estimated at 170,000 tons per annum ( as of 2006 ) and has inclined to shrink for a successive rise of electric power fee. Furthermore, the price of silicon metal to be sold to Europe is more favorable than that paid in the US market and, therefore, Brazilian producers have given a priority to the export for Europe.
The aspect of silicon metal as mentioned above is a shortsighted phenomenon but, in Europe, the rushed exports of silicon metal from China to Romania and Bulgaria have become a problem and the European Commission ( EC ) started to investigate this matter. For a reference, the current antidumping duty imposed on imports of Chinese silicon metal into the EU countries is 49%. The two countries of Romania and Bulgaria have joined in the European Union ( EU ) from January of 2007 but it is questioned that, in advance of these participations, a large quantity of silicon metal was exported from China to these two countries ( shipped 7,636 tons in total during January - October of 2006 ). The higher antidumping duties have been still imposed on imports of Chinese silicon metal into the EU and the USA markets and, accordingly, it is difficult to export Chinese silicon metal for the markets in Europe and the USA.
In order to cope with a shortage of electric power occurred in China during 2003 to 2004, the movements to shift the bases to produce silicon metal from three provinces in west-north district and three provinces in west-south district to Inner Mongolia Aut. Region and Ningxia Hui Aut. Region had come up to the surface but the action to review these movements has started from the beginning of 2006. It has been acknowledged in China that a shortage of electric power spread over the whole land of China was on the way to dissolve from 2005 and has been settled in the course of 2006. By taking into account of the volume of electric power currently generated in China which is estimated to be somewhat excessive, the existing bases to produce silicon metal in the Huanan area have been evaluated again, because this area has been favored with a substantial volume of hydroelectric power generation. Owing to this change of the power situation in China, a joint venture to produce silicon metal in Inner Mongolia was decided in 2006 to withdraw ( by Xiamen Guomao ).
|last modified : Thu 25 Jan, 2007 [11:06]|