Copper Copper Copper China
February 8, 2007 12:34 PM   Subscribe

How (where) does one go about procuring 100mt of copper for shipment to China from North America?
posted by strangelove to Work & Money (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You would go to a scrap metal broker who deals with large scale non-ferrous metals recovery and can source stock from other suppliers. For expense, you'll want to deal with a scrap supplier. But, with the copper market the way it is, I would doubt you would find this much available from any one dealer. I own metal futures and copper trades at ~$6,025 per metric ton or $2.73 a pound. I say I doubt it because demand outstripped subby by 128,000 MT worldwide last year.
posted by parmanparman at 12:49 PM on February 8, 2007

Wouldn't it be simpler to procure the copper inside China? Particularly since they just raised the export tariff, I'd think that domestic sources would be competitive, particularly given the overhead that transporting 100mt would involve.

100mt is about three 40' shipping containers (roughly, if each one can hold ~30-35mt). This page says that it runs about $5k per container to go from China to the U.S., so assuming the reverse is about the same, you're talking about $15k in shipping, plus the PRC import tariffs, plus freight forwarder's fees, etc. And I have to imagine that the import tariffs are pretty steep.

Assuming you can find copper at the market price here in the U.S., and neglecting the cost of transporting it to the port and containerizing it, you're at 8% overhead.

There have to be people who specialize in industrial procurement inside the PRC, specifically for foreign businesses; until you've priced those options, shipping from the U.S. seems premature.
posted by Kadin2048 at 3:40 PM on February 8, 2007

Being in this industry myself...the answer is:

Shipping 5x20' closed oversea containers (holding approx. 20mts/container) or 40' containers (which at most, depending on the circumstance, can hold slightly more...say 25mts)'re either looking at 4 or 5 containers.

Usually the buyers handle the freight (usually FAS), ccic inspection (import licence requirement), and documentation (sometimes through a freight forwarder, but not always).

Finding the supply in the US isn't extremely difficult, all from one supplier...will be slightly more difficult.
You then have to decide what kind of copper. #1, #2, (ISRI specs as Birch/Cliff) or a lower grade (such as insulated wire). Payment terms in the US for exporting tends to be prior to shipment, but hopefully you can back to back the transaction or make arrangements for a L/C. #1 is going for approx. $.08-15 under Comex Copper

Best place to start looking for suppliers is through the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries... or ISRI.

My company & most other companies are ISRI membersl... you can buy/access a directory, or join as a member & get more involved, etc. Their Website is ISRI.ORG
posted by foodybat at 6:25 PM on February 8, 2007

I am helping out a friend. He has group in China looking for 99.99 percent copper. There is a LC as well.
posted by strangelove at 8:40 PM on February 8, 2007

sounds like he is looking for #1 copper (isri spec Birch/cliff).

Many of those scrap dealers will not take an LC, unless they've done substantial business w/that company. You maybe able to work out 50-80% deposit, balance via LC.

Start with ISRI... or if you're in a major city, get your phone book, and contact local scrap dealers.

good luck!!! (Copper is up $.08/lb today!!!)
posted by foodybat at 11:28 AM on February 9, 2007

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