September 8, 2017 / 4:07 AM / in 10 months

UPDATE 1-China copper imports steady in Aug despite surging prices

* Copper imports stand at 390,000 T for fourth month in a row

* That comes despite climb in benchmark global copper prices

* Aluminium exports flat year-on-year (Adds detail)

BEIJING, Sept 8 (Reuters) - China’s imports of copper and copper products held steady for a fourth month in August, indicating demand remains robust in the world’s largest consumer of the metal despite surging prices.

Arrivals of unwrought copper totaled 390,000 tonnes last month, according to official customs data released on Friday. Monthly imports, which include anode, refined, alloy and semi-finished copper products, have stood around that level since May.

The August figure was up 11.4 percent from 350,000 tonnes a year ago.

Total unwrought copper imports for the first eight months of 2017 stood at 3.01 million tonnes, down 12.8 percent from a year earlier, customs said.

Benchmark three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange hit a three-year high at $6,970 per tonne on Tuesday.

China’s copper concentrate imports stood at 1.44 million tonnes in August, easing from 1.45 million tonnes a year earlier and up from 1.4 million tonnes in July.

Year-to-date concentrate imports came in at 11.1 million tonnes, up from 10.79 million tonnes a year earlier, customs said.

Meanwhile, China exported 410,000 tonnes of unwrought aluminium and aluminium products, including primary, alloy and semi-finished aluminium products in August, flat year-on-year but down 6.8 percent from 440,000 tonnes in July.

Year-to-date exports were up 5.5 percent from the same period in 2016 at 3.25 million tonnes, according to customs.

The United States has accused China of flooding international markets with cheap aluminum and steel, stoking trade tensions between the two countries.

China has long-denied that it has been offloading metals abroad at the expense of foreign producers.

For more details, click on (Reporting by Tom Daly; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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