The aluminium market service short term outlook (STO) is published monthly and provides a forecast of aluminium supply and demand fundamentals over the next two years. Market sentiment continues to swing between two polar opposites that China will cut significant operating capacity or that nothing much has really changed. We believe that the reality is somewhere in the middle. Some capacity may well have been halted in recent weeks with a view to meet the required regulations. But the jury is still out on the winter pollution related cutbacks. Smelter operators will no doubt point out the irony of halting low cost efficient capacity while older less efficient operations continue to produce. The robustness and accuracy of official Chinese production data also adds a further problem to our calculations. We expect to get better clarity on this as 2017 progresses and as we carry out on the ground research.