Across South America, the world’s largest copper-producing continent, countries including both Peru and Chile have closed borders to contain the outbreak, Fastmarkets understands.
While mine disruptions are yet to be reported in Chile, the world’s top copper supplier, Peru’s border closure and 15-day national quarantine has led to closures and development halts.
Metal market sellers are also experiencing difficulties in transporting material out of Bolivia, which borders Peru and Chile, and has no sea port to export minerals.
Extended closures and logistical jams could see supply of base metals produced in the region restricted, going some way to balance markets in which demand has plummeted along with prices since January.
“As China is restarting, coronavirus-caused supply disruptions might support metals prices in the short term,” Dmitry Glushakov, head of mining research at VTB Capital, said in a market note.
This also comes as treatment charges (TCs) for...