Column: Market turbulence won’t slow aluminum’s green drive – by Andy Home (Reuters/ – May 26, 2022)

These are turbulent times for the global aluminum market. Aluminum has for years been characterized by chronic oversupply thanks to China’s relentless build-out of primary smelting capacity. Now, however, buyers in Europe and the United States are paying up record high premiums to get hold of physical metal.

The Chinese aluminum juggernaut has run out of momentum and smelters in Europe are powering down as a rolling energy crunch takes a rising toll on the region’s producers. London Metal Exchange (LME) stocks are disappearing to fill gaps in the supply chain. Even after its recent tumble LME three-month metal at a current $2,860 per tonne is trading at levels last seen in the great bull market of 2008.

None of which, it seems, is going to slow down the drive towards green low-carbon aluminum with some of the world’s largest buyers this week committing to purchase a minimum of 10% of near-zero carbon metal by 2030.

Green alliance

The newly-formed aluminum branch of the First Movers Coalition comprises automotive companies Ford and Volvo Group, packaging company Ball Corp, aluminum products manufacturer Novelis and trade house Trafigura.

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