The largest copper mine in the world, Escondida in Chile, is almost close to stop operation because of the rejection of the unionized workers of the recent wage offer from the owner of BHP. Now the mine is dealing with a strike vote.
This development is very critical because it affects the entire copper production industry in South America. New data revealed last month showed that that the major country now known to be the largest importer of copper in the world id China.
The General Administration of Customs from China has already published an import statistics for last year and it showed that the incoming copper concentrate shipments originating from South America is higher for 2016.
Chile is leading nation when it comes to copper production because it has imported to China at a growing rate of 26.7 per cent last year which totals 4.74 million tons of copper.
This percentage is almost the same as the shipment increase from Chile that China saw in 2015 which is at 27 per cent. This suggests that the demand for coppers from Chile continues to grow among Chinese buyers.
Another critical point on the new data released by customs revealed that there is also undergoing problems with Peru which is another copper importing country to China and the neighbour of Chile in South America.
It was only last year that Peru was considered to the second largest exporter of copper concentrates to China. Shipments from Peru to the Chine have reached a total of 4.61 million tons.
When calculated as one, the two countries – China and Peru, have exported a total of 17.05 million tons of copper concentrate in China for the year 2016. Following on the third spot of the largest copper concentrate supplier is Mongolia which has shipped a total 1.5 million tons.
It is expected that the focus of China in South American countries as main source of copper is going to continue and Ecuador will be the next major supply eyed by China. For people interested in visiting these South American countries, book a tour package at various online portals such as www.southamericatours.com.au.