Japan’s zinc demand may increase 7.2 percent this year to a four-year high as the economy recovers from an earthquake and tsunami and the weaker yen helps boost exporters, the country’s largest smelter said.
Japan’s zinc output will climb in 2012 as smelters run at full capacity to meet recovering demand from the auto and construction industries after the earthquake and tsunami, amid a forecast for a global deficit.
Zinc production in Japan will slump by at least 9 percent this year after the March earthquake, doubling imports to the highest level in 11 years, said the country’s top producer of the metal used to galvanize steel.
Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co. , Japan’s biggest refined zinc producer, is planning to shut its Hikoshima smelter in western Japan for about 20 days of maintenance starting from late October, a company executive said.
Zinc output by Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co. , Japan’s biggest producer of the refined metal used to galvanize steel , may decline in the next fiscal year as it plans to shut its largest smelter for two months of maintenance.