China’s structural PM part producers are continuing to benefit from the surge in domestic demand for Chinese cars and light vehicles. The China Machine Powder Metallurgy Association (CMPMA) recently reported production statistics for its 47 reporting PM part producers for the first 9 months of 2010 which showed a 50.3% increase in production tonnages compared with the same period in 2009.
The CMPMA stated that PM part production in the 3rd quarter of 2010 totalled 37,348 metric tonnes taking the cumulative total for the period to 110,005 metric tonnes (73,204 mt in the same period in 2009). Exports are said to account for around 10% of production. The 3rd quarter production figure was slightly down on the record-breaking 41,163 mt achieved in the 2nd period (April-June 2010).
Strong growth in Japan
Japan’s PM industry is also experiencing strong growth after two years of plummeting production due to the global recession, primarily on the back of increased automobile production in the country. With iron powder shipments for PM use in Japan recovering to around 54,000 mt tonnes in the first half of 2010, it gives the Japanese PM industry a healthy 87% increase compared with the extremely sluggish 29,000 mt of iron powder for PM shipped in the same period in 2009. The increase is, however, still well below the high iron powder shipment levels achieved in 2007.