SMM Metals Reports

Gold smuggling in India soared by 900% in two years

 Author: Paul Ploumis27 May 2015 Last updated at 08:29:21 GMT
NEW DELHI (Scrap Monster): Gold smuggling has become widespread in India during recent years. Ever since the imposition of strict rules on legal gold imports into the country in 2013, the smuggling acts have soared by nearly 900%. For the first time in history, the seized gold in a single financial year has crossed Rs 1,000 crore mark during 2014-'15.
According to figures released by customs, police and revenue agencies, a total of over 3,500 kilograms of gold were seized during 2014-’15. The quantity of seized gold has multiplied 10 times over the two year period. It must be noted that only 350 kilograms of gold were seized during the entire year 2012-’13. The above figures represent only the tip of the iceberg, considering the estimates that only nearly 10% of actual smuggled gold are seized by officials.
The agencies highlighted the sudden rise in gold seizures in Nepal during this period. According to them, smugglers had used Nepal as a hub for transporting gold through Indian borders. However, with the recent earthquake leading to the death of the key conduit in illegal gold trading in the country, illegal gold trade from Nepal has witnessed sudden slowdown. Meantime, smugglers are seen exploiting new possible routes to push gold into the country. Increased number of gold seizure incidents was recently reported from Morey border in Manipur, Kandla port in Gujarat and Bangladesh border in West Bengal.
Also, smugglers are found enacting unique ways to smuggle gold into the country. Officials had recently intercepted a courier parcel which contained torch, whose batteries were made of gold. The DRI officials at the New Delhi International Airport had seized 60 kilograms of gold from courier packages containing mixer with gold blades and transistors with gold capacitors.
In a bid to suppress rising Current Account Deficit (CAD), the Indian government had raised the gold import duty to as high as 10%. The spurt in gold smuggling is partly attributed to the prevailing high gold import duty structure, says Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) - the apex body that represents India’s gems and jewellery industry.

Nickel Ore Inventories at China Major Ports Up Slightly

SHANGHAI, May 25 (SMM) – Nickel ore inventories at China’s six major ports increased 40,000 tonnes to 11.8 million tonnes last week, Shanghai Metals Market data show.  
The increase at the six’s port inventories was due mainly to more shipments from the Philippines, SMM says. 
SMM adds the Port of Yingkou to its port inventory survey sample since last week, to better reflectnickel ore stocks at Chinese ports.
The Port of Yingkou is the nearest sea port to northeast China, and east Inner Mongolia.
If not include inventories at the Yingkou port, inventories at the other five ports were down, according to SMM data. 

SMM Aluminum Market Daily Review (2015-5-22)

SHANGHAI, May 25 (SMM) –SHFE 1507 aluminum contract moved sideways during last Friday’s morning session, but inched down in the afternoon. Finally, the contract ended at RMB 13,215/mt. Trading volumes totaled 19,482 lots, and positions were down 4,578 to 108,620.
Spot aluminum largely traded between RMB 13,030-13,050/mt in Shanghai last Friday, discounts of RMB 150-170/mt over SHFE 1506 aluminum contract, versus RMB 13,020-13,040/mt in Wuxi, and RMB 13,080-13,090/mt in Hangzhou. Suppliers were eager to sell, but processors generally took a wait-and-see stance. Traders also showed little buying interest. In the afternoon, suppliers cut offers to RMB 13,020-13,030/mt after SHFE aluminum fell. But lower prices did not lure buyers in. 

China Six Giants to Control 70% of Domestic Rare Earths Production Quotas in 2015

SHANGHAI, May 20 (SMM) – China has set rare earth oxide (REO) production quota for 2015 at 105,000 tonnes, unchanged with 2014, the Ministry of Land & Resources (MLR) announced May 18.
The quota includes 17,900 tonnes of ion-type medium and heavy rare earth, and 87,100 tonnes of rock-type light rare earth. Quota allocated to China’s six rare earth giants is 73,065 tonnes, 70% of the national total, according to the MLR.   

China Zinc Prices to Rise to18,000 yuan in 2H 2015, SMM Lead&Zinc Summit Reports

SHANGHAI, May 19 (SMM) – The price of #0 zinc in China’s domestic market will likely climb to 18,000 yuan per tonne during 2H 2015, SMM Lead&Zinc Summit reports. 
“#0 zinc price will trade between 16,500-17,500 yuan per tonne for the rest of year, and may peak at 18,000 yuan,” said Wang Ye, deputy general manager of BGRIMM Lilan Consulting Corp.
China will see zinc consumption improve during 2H 2015, Wang said at the 2015 SMM Lead&Zinc Summit on May 13-15. 
Wang predicted at the summit zinc consumption will grow 4.5% to 6.87 million tonnes for the whole year. 
The growth room for zinc production, one the other hand, will be small as current operation rate is already high, Wang added.