The EU is using steel to win votes against China. The WTO on Monday – whether intentionally or not – holds suitably against. And the base metals have almost all risen.
WTO calls for more facts and less polemics
China has consistently been one of the main targets of international powers. On Monday, WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala therefore noted that China is much more willing to cooperate on global trade reforms if the Asian country does not feel threatened or targeted by international powers.
The background is the consistent fear of the U.S., the European Union and Japan of powerful Chinese state-owned enterprises. And that Chinese industrial subsidies should be limited because they distort the global economy.
The Director-General said the WTO was now working with the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development on a study on subsidies overall to “put some objective facts on the table.”
EU vs. China: Catching votes with steel
The EU has a problem with its Comprehensive Agreement on Investments with China. Human rights concerns, the Chinese government’s blocking stance on certain points and the EU Commission’s feeling of a shift toward more authority there.
Since such concerns are often not enough to convince the European Council comprising leaders of the 27 EU countries, they are garnished with a bit of economics and the European fear of foreign steel and aluminum.
Base metal prices mostly higher, nickel also gaining momentum
Copper is once again continuing its advance toward $10,000 per ton this morning, Tuesday, April 27, and the upward momentum is now so great across the complex that it has awakened nickel from its two-month slumber. This is what metalbulletin.com writes today.
Most of the LME three-month base metals quotes were higher this morning. The exception was zinc ($2,922.50 per tonne), which was down 0.2%, while the other metals were up 0.4% on average. Led by a 0.8% rise in nickel ($16,815 per ton), which was preparing to break out of its two-month sideways trend. Copper rose 0.6% to $9,837.50 per ton, its highest level since August 2011, and approached its all-time high of $10,190 per ton set in February 2011.
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