June 1 (Reuters) – Aluminum Corp of China (Chalco) lowered its spot price for alumina on Tuesday, its first cut in 17 months, as Europe’s debt crisis pinched demand for the material used in aluminium production.
“Sentiment for aluminium has been weak recently,” Belle Chan, an analyst at BOCI Research Ltd. “Prices for imported alumina have came down and Chalco is just following import prices.”
Chalco (2600.HK)(601600.SS) cut its alumina spot price by 5 percent to 2,850 yuan per tonne from Tuesday, according to a notice on its website (www.chalco.com.cn).
The price change follows a 7.1 percent increase on Jan. 8 and is Chalco’s first price cut since January 2009, according to Reuters records.
Two tonnes of alumina can produce one tonne of aluminium.
Rising global aluminium production has also damped prices with London Metal Exchange prices MAL3 down about 14 percent in the past two months to about $1,995 on Tuesday.
Chalco, the country’s top aluminum company and the world’s third-largest alumina producer, raised alumina prices steadily throughout 2009 from a low of 2,000 yuan. Prices had halved in the second half of 2008 from 4,200 yuan per tonne. (Reporting by Alison Leung; Editing by Chris Lewis)