Interview: India Metal Importers Default as Prices Dive

About 30 percent of Indian industrial metal importers have defaulted on consignments after prices slumped by more than half, the head of a trade body said on Wednesday. "Most of the importers are hit severely. Some importers who had taken bigger risks are not able to clear consignments from the ports," Surendra Mardia, president of the Bombay Metal Exchange (BME), told Reuters in an interview. The BME, with about 500 members, is the biggest association of non-ferrous metal traders in India. Prices of copper, which contributes to the bulk of industrial metal imports, have dropped more than 60 percent as demand slumped amid a global economic turmoil. Mardia said traders who had booked shipments by paying 10-30 percent of the price were now refusing to accept deliveries and pay the remainder. Read more.