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World news round-up 6 June 2014

China commodity finance probe; scrap metal dealers look beyond China; Siemens in key metals partnership; Veolia subsidiary sold

Qingdao port probe fuels bank worries

Worries over a probe into commodity financing at China’s Qingdao port has appeared to deepen with Standard Bank Group and a subsidiary of Louis Dreyfus Corp warning of potential losses as copper prices fell further.

The inquiry, first reported by Reuters and other media earlier this week, has revived concerns about the impact of China’s deepening credit crisis on its metal imports, much of which piles up in warehouses to be used as collateral. London copper prices have fallen 2% in two days.

Responding to queries about the inquiry at Qingdao, which has not been officially confirmed, Standard Bank said it was “working with local authorities” to investigate potential irregularities at China’s third-largest port, a major source for metal and iron ore imports.



Scrap metal traders seek to offset flagging demand from China

Scrap metal processors and dealers are turning to Southeast Asia and other markets around the globe to offset falling demand from China amid concerns about tightening credit in the world’s number one industrial metal consumer.

“We have scrapyards in Thailand and we’re seeing it increase while it’s slowing in China,” said Koen Schautteet, a trader with Belgium-based United Non-Ferrous Trading at the Bureau of International Recycling’s annual conference in Miami.



Siemens and Mitsubishi partner for metals industry

Siemens and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) are forming a globally operating complete provider for plants, products and services for the iron, steel and aluminium industry. The hope is to cooperate in the field of the metallurgical industry. One reason for the partnership is the challenging market environment and high price pressure.

While the technology strengths of Siemens Metals Technologies lie in particular in iron and steel production, casting, automation, environmental technologies and lifecycle services, MHI’s technology competence is primarily focused on hot and cold rolling, processing as well as production expertise.

Control Design


China: China still key EfW energy market

China remains the most important growth market for new EfW capacity. Between 2008 and 2013, 61.3% of new contracts awarded were from the People’s Republic, according to a recently published study by the Swiss consultancy Vaccani, Zweig & Associates. The European market was responsible for nearly 24.6% of the world wide investment volume.

Vaccani reports that contracts were awarded for a total of 220,000 tonnes per day.



TransForce subsidiary buys Veolia outfit

Montreal-based TransForce, operates a variety of businesses throughout Canada and the United States, reports its subsidiary Matrec has bought Veolia Solid Waste Canada for about $25m.

Veolia has been operating for about 40 years in the Quebec City, Montreal and Beauce regions, where it offers collection, disposal, recycling and related services to municipalities and businesses. Matrec is one of several waste management companies within the TransForce group.

Brand On Sun


Latasa to build aluminium recycling plant

Brazilian aluminium recycler Latasa plans to build a new plant in the state of Paraná with support of the local state government. The company will invest 30 million Reais ($13.3m) in the plant in the city of Centenário do Sul, targeting a monthly recycling capacity of 2,000-3,000 tonnes of scrap.

Metal Bulletin


Enerkem launches full-scale waste-to-biofuels and chemicals facility

Enerkem has inaugurated its first full-scale municipal waste-to-biofuels and chemicals facility in Edmonton, Alberta.

“Our breakthrough technology uses garbage instead of fossil sources for the production of chemicals and liquid transportation fuels. We are proud of the inauguration of our first full-scale biorefinery facility as it is the culmination of more than 10 years of disciplined efforts to scale up our technology from pilot and demonstration, to commercial scale,” said Vincent Chornet, president and chief executive of Enerkem.

This facility, operated by Enerkem Alberta Biofuels, is said to be among the world’s first commercial facilities or the production of renewable chemicals and advanced biofuels. During its construction, more than 600 direct and indirect jobs were created.

Digital Journal


Steel packaging closes on 75% recycling rate in Europe

A total of 2.7 million tonnes of steel packaging was recycled to make new steel products throughout Europe in 2012, the Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaging (APEAL) has revealed. This average recycling rate of 74% “reinforces the long term trend for steel as the most recycled packaging material in Europe”, said Alexander Mohr, secretary general of APEAL.

Steel packaging’s recycling rate has increased threefold over the last 20 years, the association states. This success is due a combination of its infinite recyclability, the ease with which magnetic steel can be recovered from the waste stream and recycled, and an understanding of the resource and emissions savings to be gained.

Recycling International


US concern wins Abidjan waste contract

California-based environmental services firm WISE Solutions CDI will invest around $226.35m in a 15-year concession to manage waste from Ivory Coast’s commercial capital Abidjan. Ivory Coast - West Africa’s largest economy - is pushing for heavy investments to upgrade infrastructure left neglected during a decade-long political crisis that ended in a brief war in 2011.


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