Indonesia, the world’s largest tin shipper, eased a rule on lead content to help smelters meet export requirements, the Trade Ministry said.
The limit for lead was increased to a maximum 0.030 percent from 0.010 percent, according to a regulation signed by Trade Minister Gita Wirjawan on June 28 and published on the ministry’s website. The iron limit was unchanged at a maximum 0.005 percent, while other metals such as cadmium and aluminum were removed from the regulation, it said. Tin purity was increased to 99.9 percent from 99.85 percent as planned, the decree stated. The new rules took effect on July 1.
“This will facilitate business,” Bachrul Chairi, director general of foreign trade at the ministry, said by phone from Jakarta. The revision came after some smelters said they were unable to meet the content limits, said Thamrin Latuconsina, export director for mining and industry products. Hidayat Arsani, president of the tin mining association, didn’t answer three calls to his mobile phone seeking comment.
Tin for delivery in three months rose 1.9 percent to $19,200 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange at 5:20 p.m. in Singapore. The metal used in soldering and packaging has dropped 18 percent this year.
Exports from Indonesia may fall 20 percent to 79,000 tons this year because of the rules, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey published on June 27. Shipments surged 18 percent in May from April to 9,242 tons, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The trade ministry will release June figures this week.
Tin producers must trade ingots in the local physical market first before export with effect from Aug. 30 and for other tin products from Jan. 1, 2015, according to the rule.
“This will enable us to monitor shipments,” Chairi said. The trade will create a reference price for Indonesian tin, he said, without providing details on the bourse that will handle the physical trading.
The Indonesia Commodity and Derivatives Exchange is the only bourse in the country with a tin contract.
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