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US scrap copper, aluminum hit by new China tariffs starting December 15


China will impose an additional 5 per cent tariff on imports of copper scrap and aluminum scrap from the US beginning December 15, according to a list of retaliatory tariffs released by the Ministry of Finance late Friday.

China had already levied a 25 per cent tariff on US copper scrap, one of its biggest suppliers, in a previous round of duties and twice hit US scrap aluminum with a 25% tariff in 2018.

The US dropped by 80 per cent in the first half of 2019 from a year earlier to about 52,022 tonnes, shows customs data, while aluminum scrap imports fell 16 per cent to 229,837 tonnes.

China, the world’s biggest metals consumer, is tightening restrictions on imports of scrap metal, regardless of its origin, as part of an environmental campaign against foreign solid waste.