Zincs Jan consumption rises 9.6% on Chinese demand

March 29 | Updated: Mar 30 2006, 05:30am hrs
Zinc consumption rose 9.6% in January from a year ago, as higher Chinese usage of the metal widened a global production shortfall, the International Lead and Zinc Study Group said. Zinc use in January rose to 9,23,000 metric tonne, beating output by 42,000 metric tonne, the Lisbon-based group said in a monthly report on its web site. The shortfall a year ago was 12,000 tonne. Production of the metal used to galvanise steel lagged behind demand by 4,55,000 tonne last year, the group said.

China, the worlds largest zinc user, expanded consumption 22% in January to 2,35,000 tonne. The nation is using more corrosion-resistant, zinc-coated steel in construction and cars production. Zinc prices have almost doubled in the past year, and reached a record on March 27 on the LME. Usage in the US, the No 2 zinc consumer, jumped 28% to 1,11,000 tonne while European consumption gained 8% to 2,30,000 tonne. Zinc output in China, also the worlds largest producer, rose 27% to 2,29,000 tonne. Global production rose 6% to 8,81,000 tonne.Zinc for delivery in three months on the LME was $34 or 1.3%, lower at $2,590 a tonne as of 12:53 PM local time.