SHANGHAI, Jun 1 (SMM) – Resources: According to SMM statistics, China's nickel sulphide ore output was about 80,000 mt in metal content in 2021, and the total nickel ore import was about 430,000 mt in metal content. Imports of laterite nickel ore were 340,000 mt in metal content and imports of nickel sulphide ore were 90,000 mt in metal content, reflecting heavy reliance on imports. For laterite nickel ore, China not only has small reserves and low grade, but also has high mining costs, which makes China uncompetitive in laterite nickel ore mining. Laterite nickel ore is the main raw material of NPI, while the latter is an important raw material in stainless steel production. As a major stainless steel producer, China needs to import a large amount of laterite nickel ore every year to develop its stainless steel industry. With the implementation of Indonesia’s nickel ore export ban, some Chinese mining companies and smelters began to make plans for building smelting and refining projects overseas.
Cost: NPI is the main raw material for stainless steel production. Compared with Indonesian companies, Chinese companies have obvious disadvantages in NPI production costs. Chinese companies import nickel ore mainly from the Philippines, whose nickel ore is of lower grade and more expensive than Indonesian ore. As a result, the raw material costs of Chinese NPI enterprises are higher than their competitors in Indonesia. As the NPI market is expected to maintain an oversupply in the future, the competitiveness of small stainless steel enterprises with high costs in China will be further weakened. In order to seek better development, Chinese enterprises are looking for opportunities to "go global".
For full coverage, please click: Key Takeaway from SMM 2023 Indonesia Nickel and Cobalt Industry Chain Conference: Global Nickel and Stainless Steel Market Outlook 2023-2027 and Indonesia’s Critical Role in Attracting Chinese Investment
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Key Takeaway from SMM 2023 Indonesia Nickel and Cobalt Industry Chain Conference: Global Nickel and Stainless Steel Market Outlook 2023-2027 and Indonesia’s Critical Role in Attracting Chinese Investment