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Japan’s recyclers are struggling owing to low levels of scrap generation, with prices hiked upwards to reflect the imbalance between supply and demand.

Many scrap dealers with their own yards are busy preparing for new regional regulations to be enforced in April next year which will demand well-organized storage to meet prefecture permit requirements. As yet, however, the details behind these regulations are still to be outlined.

India, the largest importer of Japanese copper cathode, has delayed the application of the Bureau of Indian Standards certificate. However, the impact of the major Adani Group smelter soon to start operations in India will be big enough to disturb the Japanese copper market in a negative way over the long term.

Japan’s domestic aluminium scrap market is very tight and manufacturers are being forced to buy material at the highest price levels in order to compete with exporters.