Weak lead prices hurting re-cyclers
BRUSSELS - Persistent weak lead prices on the London Metal Exchange (LME) this year have impacted on re-cycling, squeezing margins severely, traders said at the Bureau of International Recycling\'s (BIR) autumn convention.
\"The year 2002 has been a disaster for lead recycling companies,\" said Netherlands-based trader, Johan Van Peperzeel.
Low metals prices are keeping scrap supplies off the market, said Peperzeel, leaving processors to use primary ingot as a replacement, which is costlier.
An improvement in 2003 is unlikely, as the car market, where 25-30 pct of lead consumption goes into new batteries, is expected to stay depressed.
\"Recyclers want cheaper scrap batteries, but for months they (battery prices) stay level and environmental (recycling) costs are growing,\" he said.
\"Maybe in ten years we will have new legislation where there is a fee for collection and recylers do not have to take notice of the LME.\"
REUTERS NEWS SERVICE
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