SHANGHAI, Jun 16 (SMM) - Manganese ore import prices differed significantly in May. The monthly average price of Australia lump remained at 62 yuan/mtu, flat MoM; Gabon ore 56 yuan/mtu, down 7% MoM; and South Africa semi-carbonate ore 40 yuan/mtu, a MoM increase of 3%. As Australia lump ore prices stood high, the factory increased the proportion of semi-carbonate ore and Gabon ore. Specifically speaking, because of its supply shortage and the concentration of mineral rights, the overall prices of the Australia lump were high. For Gabon ore, the sources circulating in the market were still the low-priced ones due to high arrivals at ports and the shipment cycle of overseas ore, hence the Gabon ore prices dropped slightly in May. With the consumption of low-priced sources, Gabon ore prices ushered in a mild increase.
In May 2022, the average ex-factory price of spot EMM (in major producing areas) dropped slightly by 4% MoM to 15,200 yuan/mt.. The monthly average FOB price was $2,372/mt, down 7% MoM.
The output of EMM increased slightly in May as some enterprises in Guangxi gradually resumed the production. However, some enterprises in Guizhou and Hunan provinces reduced or stopped the production due to environmental protections, ore supply issues among others. The total output rose slightly by less than 10,000 mt this month after the output cuts and growth were offset by each other.
China's battery-grade manganese sulphate output stood at 15,100 mt in May 2022, down significantly by 42% from 25,907 mt in April. Affected by high nickel prices and the COVID-19 pandemic, the output of precursors in China has dropped significantly, and the output of 5-series NMC precursors with higher unit consumption of manganese salts dropped even more significantly. In May, the SMM average price of battery-grade manganese sulphate was 7,992 yuan/mt down significantly from that in May after demand for manganese sulphate slumped. And the monthly output also dropped steeply amid contracting profits and shrinking downstream consumption.