PRICING NOTICE: Proposal to launch China No2 copper material discount assessment

Fastmarkets is launching a two-month consultation on the launch of new copper material price and the potential discontinuation of its monthly assessment of the No2 copper scrap discount on a cif China basis.

Under a new categorization policy being introduced in China, most No2 scrap could be traded as renewable copper materials starting from July 2020.

Background to the consultation
At present, China’s copper scrap imports are subject to various constraints. The first is quotas; the second is a 30% tariff on United States-origin copper scrap; and the third is sellers’ access to scrap cargo inspection services conducted by the China Certification & Inspection Group (CCIC).

It remains unclear whether these price-moving constraints will still be in place after July because, for the first time, birch/cliff material could be imported into the country as merchandise rather than as scrap.

Fastmarkets has learned that the most imported birch/cliff will be eligible to be reclassified as ‘RCu-2B’ under the category of ‘copper processing materials.’

Recyclable copper products may be granted customs HS codes different to those for copper scrap, potentially giving rise to a need for a tracker price for RCu-2B.

The consultation comprises two parts:

1. Proposed launch of No2 copper material, RCu-2B (birch/cliff) discount
Name: No2 copper material, RCu-2B (birch/cliff), cif China, LME/Comex discount, US cents per lb
Quality: Minimum copper content 99% with a minimum recovery rate of 94%. Clean copper tube, belt, plate, rod, wire and other shapes. Includes burned copper wires of 1.6mm and above, attachments and surface plating. Particles of non-metallic contamination in the form of dust, sludge, crystalline salts, metal oxides and fibre should not exceed 2mm in diameter, and these particles should not exceed 0.1% of the total content, as defined by China’s State Administration for Market Regulation.
Quantity: Minimum lot size of 25 tonnes
Location: cif Chinese ports (mainly Shanghai, Guangdong, Zhejiang, Tianjin and Shandong)
Timing: Within 5 weeks
Unit: US cents per lb
Payment terms: Cash against documents, letter of credit, telegraphic transfer; other terms normalized
Publication: Monthly, last Monday of the month, 3-4pm London time

2. Potential termination of No2 copper scrap discount assessment
Because the demand-and-supply dynamics could be different for the same product, whether traded as scrap or as renewable material, Fastmarkets additionally invites feedback on whether to maintain or discontinue the existing assessment of the No2 copper scrap discount for China.

Currently, Fastmarkets makes a monthly assessment of the copper scrap No2 copper (birch/cliff), imported into China, 94-96%, LME/Comex discount, cif China.

A range of Fastmarkets articles relating to the renaming of scrap as renewables is available via the following links:
China renames copper renewable materials under five categories; Al gets three
FOCUS: What happens after China renames scrap metal as renewable material?
INTL COPPER CONF: Over 90% of current Chinese copper scrap imports eligible for renaming - Jinrui Futures
China softens tone on metal scrap imports with ‘step-by-step’ ban proposal

The consultation period for the proposed launch and potential discontinuation, starts from June 3 and will end on August 2. Fastmarkets invites feedback from the market throughout June and July.

The launch and potential discontinuation will take place on August 31, subject to market feedback.

Fastmarkets has no financial interest in the level or direction of the discount.

For more information, or to provide feedback on this notice, or if you would like to provide price information by becoming a data submitter to this price, please contact Julian Luk by email at: Please add the subject heading FAO: Julian Luk, re: copper scrap cif China.

To see all Fastmarkets’ pricing methodology and specification documents, go to

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