The highlights in Asia on S&P Global Platts Market Movers, with India Desk Editor Aastha Agnihotri:
* Eyes on China's five-year plan and how it could shape the commodities markets
* Japan aluminum premiums surge
* Thermal coal producers focus on Chinese power utility seaborne tenders
* SIEW 2020 tackles strategies for a low-carbon energy future
S&P Global Platts Metals Trade Review:
- Met coal prices rebound from multi-year lows as Q4 outlook firms
- Soaring iron ore prices bring buying flexibility to the fore
- China's steel winter balancing act to decide Asia's fortunes
- Alumina anticipates calm Q4 after bumpy Jul-Sep
- Ferrous scrap eyes firmer Q4 on steel recovery, slower collection
This week: Singapore International Energy Week kicks off, Japan aluminum premiums hit 14-month high, and thermal coal seen stable.
But first, China's top leadership will meet in Beijing Oct. 26-29 to settle on the next five-year economic plan. The conclave is a closed-door affair, but its implications are far reaching.
Oil markets will be closely monitoring China's plenary meeting. The plan will set the tone of China's development focus which will reshape its demand for commodities in the next five years. The plan will be approved in March next year during the fourth session of the 13th National People's Congress.
The meeting will also be keenly watched by metals markets participants for any signs that the new 5-year plan will support metals demand. The feeling is that China will focus on what it calls new infrastructure. So this means 5G, new digital networks and other technology-related initiatives – none of which is particularly metals intensive. If there's any indication that traditional infrastructure -- such as roads, bridges, railways etc –- will also be supported, metals prices might jump.
Elsewhere in Asia, CIF Japan aluminum premiums surged to 14-month high last week. The rally was on the back of LME aluminum price spikes, continuous demand recovery from automotive manufactures, and structural supply tightness in Asia. The Platts FOB Australian alumina index gained 4% week on week. Will alumina continue its stellar run? And will aluminum sustain its healthy demand?
More insights on aluminum and other steel and metals markets are in the latest Platts Metals Trade Review on spglobal.com/platts.
In thermal coal, Asian thermal coal traders are keeping a wary eye for any seaborne tenders from Chinese power utilities this week to further support the Indonesian export sentiment.
Buyers from India are lifting coal supply from their existing port stockpiles and postponing seaborne trades to avoid coinciding the cargo delivery period with the Diwali festival. Meanwhile, high-ash Australian coal prices are expected to stabilize amid uptick in seaborne demand outside China while supply of the grade turned tight. Chinese domestic coal prices are likely to be stable ahead of winters while mines in Inner Mongolia ramped up their production.
And finally, for all energy watchers, one of the biggest energy conferences in Southeast Asia is here. Singapore will hold the Singapore International Energy Week this week. More than a dozen energy ministers from Asia Pacific will discuss how countries plan to combat climate change, even though COVID-19 has caused a temporary drop in emissions, and the decarbonization of fuels like oil and natural gas. Saudi Arabia's energy minister is expected to talk about the state of oil markets, the country's fuel supply relationships with Asian consumers, and its future in a low-carbon world.
Another key event will be the S&P Global Platts LNG and Hydrogen conference that will outline the trajectory of LNG, natural gas and hydrogen markets in Asia. The virtual event will tackle major issues such as the impact of COVID-19 on LNG markets and the risks to an emerging hydrogen economy, long-term contract expirations, trade flow dynamics; and the latest developments in the industry's flourishing spot market.
With that it's a wrap up. Thanks for kicking off your Monday with us. Have a great week ahead!