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Pandemic puts China metals supply chain in jeopardy

Mining - China, the world’s top metals consumer, is looking to reboot industrial activity across the country, after the pandemic lockdown hit its economy hard.

But potential shortages of key metal-making raw materials create risks to production of everything from home appliances to electric vehicle batteries.

China boosted copper imports year-on-year in March, but still faces challenges as key suppliers in Latin America are cutting output due to coronavirus restrictions.

Copper jumped last week after a rebound in Chinese imports of the metal indicated the country’s manufacturing sector may be emerging faster than initially thought from the covid-19 slump.

China’s economy last year relied on imports for almost 80% of its copper concentrate, based on International Copper Study Group data.

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