Sumitomo Light Metal Industries’ rolled copper unit will increase the production by around 10% to monthly 4,100 tonnes in first half of fiscal 2011 through September from original plan. The firm expects 4,000 tonnes level of production in second half of fiscal 2011 despite of production adjustment by the users. The rolled copper unit targets 1.2 billion yen of operating profit for fiscal 2011.The plant in Aichi, which makes copper tube, copper alloy tube and titanium tube, planned monthly 3,700 tonnes of production in first half of fiscal 2011. The production is higher than the plan due to higher demand for air conditioner. The production was 4,200-4,300 tonnes or near full capacity except for August. The copper tube demand is uncertain when air conditioner makers started production adjustment since late August. The plant tries to keep around 4,000 tonnes per month of production in second half of fiscal 2011 while the production level could be slightly lower than the plan launched in August. Sumitomo Light Metal Industries also tries to increase local copper tube procurement at Sumikei (Guangzhou) Metal Products and Sumikei (Malaysia), which make inner grooved copper tube. Sumitomo Light Metal Industries tries to improve the profitability by using more local materials under historical high yen rate while the plant in Aichi now supplies almost all requirements of the offshore plants. The firm keeps supplying high grade tube from Aichi plant for domestic air conditioner makers while the firm shifts to local copper tube at offshore plants especially for lower grade tube of commodity grade air conditioner.
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