BEIJING, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Shanghai aluminium prices rose over 1 percent on Wednesday, bouncing back from a slight dip in the previous session, as rising raw material prices and production cuts in China provided end-of-year support to the market.
Producers of alumina in northern China have been affected by an escalating natural gas shortage in the region, pushing up the price of the substance, which is used by smelters to make aluminium. The aluminium price revival, following a 17.5 percent plunge
in the price of the metal from Sept. 21 as winter curbs on Chinese smelters underwhelmed, "is because of the alumina price rebound, which is in turn driven by the gas price surge," said Helen Lau, an analyst at Argonaut Securities in Hong Kong.
"Given the rising gas price, fuel cost may account for a higher percentage than the normal 30 percent" of alumina production costs, she added. FUNDAMENTALS: * SHFE ALUMINIUM: The most-traded February contract in Shanghai was up 1.2 percent at 14,660 yuan ($2,222.93)per tonne at the mid-session interval, heading for a
fourth gain in five days after data out last week showed a hefty drop in China's November aluminium output. * ALUMINA: A unit of State Power Investment Corp in China's Shanxi province will cut its alumina output by 50,000-60,000 tonnes this month due to gas shortages, a company
source told Reuters on Tuesday. * LME ALUMINIUM: Three-month aluminium on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.1 percent at $2,097.50 a tonne by 0450 GMT, having touched a three-week peak on Tuesday. * COPPER: The most-traded February copper contract on the ShFE gained 0.3 percent to 53,700 yuan a tonne, but
copper on the LME was flat at $6,941.50 a tonne. * UNITED STATES: U.S. President Donald Trump's new security strategy bolsters the case for trade actions to protect U.S.
economic interests on national security grounds, including possible import tariffs on steel and aluminium, a senior Trump administration official said on Tuesday. * BHP: Global miner BHP Billiton, said on Tuesday it had taken a preliminary decision to leave the World
Coal Association (WCA) over differences on climate change and might also withdraw from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.