Sunday, March 19, 2006

World Scrambles to Feed China's Appetite for Metal

YONGKANG, China About once a month, Ying Guangwu tucks some cash inside his black shirt, slings a knapsack over his back, and hits the road.The square jawed 33 year old doesn't always know where he's headed or when he'll return. But he knows exactly what he's looking for: tons of scrap metal.A pen-shaped magnet in his pocket helps him determine the quality of some metals. In December, Ying spent two weeks in Guangdong province, a 20 hour bus ride away, rummaging through factory warehouses and scrap yards. He bought 10 tons of tin ingots, lead cables and imported scrap, shipping them by truck to his wife, Lin Li. She sorted the stuff inside their two story home before reselling it to metal traders and recyclers in town.


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