Russia, China trade new copper disguised as scrap to skirt taxes, sanctions

Russian Copper Company (RCC) and Chinese firms have avoided taxes and skirted the impact of Western sanctions by trading in new copper wire rod disguised as scrap, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
Copper wire rod was shredded in the remote Xinjiang Uyghur region by an intermediary to make it hard to distinguish from scrap, the sources said, allowing both exporters and importers to profit from differences in tariffs applied to scrap and new metal, the sources said.
Russia’s export duty on copper rod was 7 per cent in December, lower than the 10 per cent levy on scrap. Imports of copper rod into China are taxed at 4 per cent, and there is no duty on Russian scrap imports.

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