Jiangxi Copper forms trading unit

HONG KONG-China’s top copper producer Jiangxi Copper Company Ltd has set up a trading firm in Shanghai with a Chinese company that has partnered with major firms such as BHP and Codelco, and a Hong Kong firm,to expand domestic and international trade.

Pan Qifang, a Jiangxi spokesman, said on Monday that the venture Jiangxi Copper International Trading Company Ltd, is 60 percent owned by Jiangxi Copper. Pan said the firm was independent of Jiangxi Copper’s own trading unit based at its headquarters in Guixi city in Jiangxi province.

China Ordins Corp holds a 30 percent stake in the trading firm and Hong Kong’s Konson, an affiliate of Silver Grant International Industries Ltd, owns 10 percent, according to a statement by Silver Grant on Friday.

Pan did not provide the venture’s operational details.

The new trading unit is expected to increase Jiangxi Copper’s trading revenues and provide a wider global reach to the Chinese smelter along with new domestic contacts, a source familiar with the trading venture said. The source, who is not authorised to speak to the media, declined to be named.

China Ordins also has strategic co-operation partnerships with the country’s top nickel producer Jinchuan Corporation and international firms such as the world’s top copper producer Chile’s Codelco and global miner BHP Billiton ,according to China Ordins’ website.

Codelco and BHP are major copper suppliers to China.

China Ordins’ nonferrous metals trading unit traded 300,000 tons of refined copper in 2010, according to the company website.

The unit’s trading partners also include China’s second-largest copper producer Tongling Nonferrous and Minmetals Nonferrous Metals, which is the country’s biggest base metals trader and a client of Codelco.

The trading venture in Shanghai has been selling copper to China Ordins this year, which would remain one of large consumers to the firm in the future, trading sources in Shanghai said.

“The trading firm now mostly trades copper and zinc. In the future, it would extend to other base metals,” the source who is familiar with the firm said.

Like other Chinese trading firms, the trading venture had imported copper and re-exported bonded copper stocks this year, the source said.

Another source said Jiangxi Copper’s own trading unit would focus on copper concentrate trade in the future and the trading venture in Shanghai would trade metal.

Jiangxi Copper owns China’s biggest operating copper mine in Jiangxi province but it does not produce sufficient copper concentrates for its refined copper production.

The company has said it plans to produce 940,000 tons of refined copper in 2011, which will be a 4.4 percent rise from 2010.

Jiangxi Copper’s refined metal capacity is about double of its capacity of semi-finished copper products, making it a major refined metal provider to the Chinese market.

But the firm is building a 400,000 tons a year of copper rod plant in Guangdong, which will boost its annual copper products capacity to 850,000 tons by May 2011 and the consumption of refined metal.

Source: China Daily

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