News

August world steel production: still falling, no relief in sight
Blue View   

As has been the case since the beginning of the year, world steel production fell in August.  The 3% y-on-y decline can be attributed to a deteriorating macroeconomic- and turbulent geopolitical environment. For the first eight months of 2022, global steel production dropped 5.1% y-on-y.

Diverging FeCr price announcements for October in Europe and China
Blue View   

Merafe Resources announced the Q4 European ferrochrome benchmark price yesterday, quoting US$1.49/lb Cr down 17.2% q-on-q. Last week, Chinese stainless steel giant Tsingshan raised its ferrochrome tender prices by RMB300/t m-on-m to US$0.97/lb Cr.

Antimony Day 2022 focusses on "sustainable antimony"
Events   

Last week, antimony market participants met in Brussels for Antimony Day 2022.  Project Blue presented a market overview and outlook.

Molybdenum-related copper investments for major diversified miners
Blue View   

Rio Tinto announced an investment of US$55M to go underground at its Kennecott Bingham Canyon mine in the USA, while Glencore acquires an additional stake in the Mara copper project in Argentina.

Rare-earths miner Lynas receives US$9M support from Japan
Blue View   

Lynas Rare Earths receives a US$9M investment from State-owned JOGMEC and Japanese trading house Sojitz Corp to support the Australian miner’s expansion plans.

Volta Trucks and DB Schenker complete test of electric truck
Blue View   

The fully-electric Volta Zero truck, with a range of 150-200km, has completed on-road prototype testing in Paris.

Container shipping rates falling off from prolonged highs
Blue View   

Container shipping rates from China are down 58% and 70% year-on-year to Rotterdam and Los Angeles, respectively. The composite World Container Index has declined for 30 consecutive weeks.

NioCorp to acquire SPAC in first for niobium sector
Blue View   

NioCorp will acquire GXII, a US-based special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) and intends to be listed on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange soon after the acquisition closes.

Polyus releases its H1 2022 statistics confirming low antimony output
Blue View   

Polyus, Russia’s largest gold producer, released its H1 2022 production results, which showed a 79% year-on-year drop in contained antimony production to 400t for the period from its Olimpiada mine.

VW secures precursor and cathode materials for 2.2M EVs per year
Blue View   

Umicore and PowerCo, VWs new battery company, have agreed a joint venture (JV) for precursor and cathode materials production in Europe. By the end of the decade, the JV plans to produce materials for 160GWh cell capacity per year, which equates to approximately 2.2 million fully electric vehicles.

US Vanadium completes Hot Springs upgrade
Blue View   

Last week, US Vanadium announced that it has completed a US$5.8M upgrade of its vanadium processing operations in Hot Springs, Arkansas, USA.

What do European stainless steel cuts mean for ferrochrome?
Blue View   

Reuters reported that stainless steel producer Aperam has halted further operations, suspending its eastern Belgian plant, which has access to wind and solar renewable energy.

Electra and LG Energy sign three-year cobalt supply deal
Blue View   

Yesterday, Electra Battery Materials announced the signing of a three-year agreement to supply battery-grade cobalt to lithium-ion battery player LG Energy. 

Solvay broadening its rare earth value capture to NdPr
Blue View   

Solvay announced that the company will extend its rare earth separation capabilities to permanent magnet materials through an expansion at its La Rochelle plant in France.

Are European Battery Raw Materials supply plans toxic?
Blue View   

The European Battery Raw Materials conference in Barcelona addressed a number of key challenges for building out an effective European battery supply chain. Constrained supply outlooks for battery-grade lithium and graphite were key points of discussion, with plans to classify lithium as toxic in Europe a notable potential own goal.

Portugal awaits assessment of lithium mines before launching auction
Blue View   

Energy Secretary Joao Galamba confirmed that the country will not commit to setting a new date for an auction of lithium mining licences as it awaits the conclusion of ongoing environmental impact studies at two potential mine sites.

US$2.8Bn metals park to be built in Zimbabwe
Blue View   

Chinese investors Hong Kong Eagle International Investment and Pacific Goal Investment are set to build plants equipped to process metals including platinum, chromium, lithium and nickel.

Perpetua awarded DoD funding for military-grade antimony trisulphide
Blue View   

The US Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded Perpetua Resources US$200,000 of funding to evaluate producing military-grade antimony trisulphide from its Stibnite Gold project in Idaho.

Largo provides update on Largo Physical Vanadium (LPV)
Blue View   

LPV aims to offer “pure play” exposure to physical vanadium while also addressing the costs associated with using vanadium in VRFBs.

NdPr metal production commissioned at South Korean plant
Blue View   

Australian Strategic Materials’ subsidiary KSM Metals has signed a binding agreement with Korean company NS World for the sale of up to 10t of neodymium-praseodymium (NdPr) metal ingot from September to December 2022.

White House publishes details on EV plan
Blue View   

The briefing note asserts that the President’s economic plans have generated an American, EV manufacturing boom.