SMM7 March 14: at the 2020 (Fifth) China International Nickel, Cobalt and Lithium Summit Forum and China International Conference on New Energy Lithium Materials held by SMM, Huo Yuan, senior analyst of Shanghai Nonferrous net Cobalt Industry, delivered a keynote speech on the change of global cobalt supply and demand pattern and future analysis under the new crown epidemic.
Impact of Xinguan epidemic on Global Cobalt Industry
Huo Yuan said that the uncertainty of the epidemic in Africa has increased and the supply of cobalt raw materials is unstable; the Glencore Mutanda copper and cobalt mine has been shut down and the global supply of cobalt raw materials has been reduced; and SMM expects China to import 86000 tons of cobalt raw materials in 2020, down 4 per cent from a year earlier. The terminal industry is affected by the epidemic in 2020, the demand is depressed, the epidemic control is optimistic, and the terminal demand may improve gradually from 2021 to 2022.
In terms of cobalt sulfate, China's cobalt sulfate began to accumulate stocks in December 2019, the uncertainty of cobalt raw materials increased, the downstream demand warmed up, and the supply and demand structure of cobalt sulfate improved in the second half of the year.
In terms of cobalt tetroxide, the inventory of cobalt tetroxide in China began in June 2020, and SMM expects that the main tone in the second half of the year will be destocking.
In terms of lithium cobalt, the upgrading of 5G smartphones, online courses on tablets, the trend of high voltage and high capacity of batteries, demand for e-cigarettes, drones, TWS headphones and smart homes have been driven, and some 3C and battery overseas orders have been transferred to China. The supply of lithium cobalt in China will increase in 2020 and is expected to increase by 15% compared with the same period last year.
Global Cobalt supply and demand pattern and Price Forecast
Huo Yuan said that the global epidemic affected the weakening of global cobalt raw material supply in 2020, replacing the mainstream status of copper and cobalt mines, and focusing on the growth of recycling supply in the future. Global cobalt raw materials may reach the balance of supply and demand in 2025, and then begin to be out of stock. SMM expects the average price of electrolytic cobalt in China to be 251000 yuan / ton in 2020. Global cobalt demand in 2020 is 139000 tons of metal tons, an increase of 2% over the same period last year. SMM expects lithium electricity to account for 61% of global cobalt demand in 2022.
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