China Copper Demand to Grow 8%


"The growth of demand in China is practically unstoppable."

China's copper demand is expected to grow at 8% this year from last year, and at a similar pace next year, a senior executive of Chile's Codelco, the world's largest copper producer, said Thursday.

"The growth of demand in China is practically unstoppable," Rodrigo Toro, corporate senior sales vice president of Codelco, told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting with clients.

Toro said Beijing's tighter monetary policy was a healthy dose to control the country's breakneck growth.

"We are happy to see the demand in China will continue at very healthy rate, not as big as would be at 12% GDP growth because producers would not be able to respond to that additional demand."

He said the global copper demand growth would be 4% this year but added it might improve next year if the economy picked up pace.

Codelco produced 1.782 million tons of copper in 2009, up 16% from a year earlier, after years of dwindling output.

The company expected to maintain the same level of output this year and in the next two years, its chief executive Diego Hernandez, told clients earlier.

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