Lithium: Further green funding flows into the lithium supply chain

In late-June, Sigma Lithium announced the signing of US$45M financing for its Grota do Cirilo project in Minas Gerais, Brazil. This marked a second green funding success in as many weeks for the lithium sector (following on from Livent’s US$225M green debt facility). Sigma’s financing package includes environmental and social covenants… Read more

Graphite: Spherical graphite prices falter as Chinese exports fall again

Spherical graphite prices have fallen to a two year low, with prices for fob China material (99.95% C, 15 microns) hitting US$2,200-2,350/t in the first week of July, according to Fastmarkets IM. At the same time, Chinese export volumes of spherical graphite fell by 38% in May, following a recovery… Read more

Copper: Prices realise ‘supercharged recovery’ through H1 2020

LME cash copper prices have experienced a ‘supercharged recovery’ through the first half of 2020. From a high of US$6,301/t on 16 January, prices collapsed to close at a low of US$4,618/t on 23 March before turning upwards, in a trend which has accelerated over the past month. Copper closed… Read more

Chromium: Outokumpu assessing higher chromium ore output volumes

Outokumpu has initiated an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for plans to expand the Kemi mine in Finland. Though no decision has been made, planned changes to operations include: expansion of the mining concession area and mine within the limitations of the current allowed area; increases in the volumes of ore… Read more

Silicon & ferrosilicon: New silicon metal anti-dumping case launched in USA

On 30 June 2020, an anti-dumping petition was filed in the USA against silicon metal imports from Bosnia, Iceland, Malaysia and Kazakhstan. The petition was jointly lodged by Globe Specialty Metals (a subsidiary of Ferroglobe, the largest silicon metal producer outside China) and Mississippi Silicon (owned by the Brazilian silicon… Read more

Tantalum, niobium: DRC’s SMB reports deadly attack at its coltan mine

Three people were reported to have been killed and another three injured during an attack at Société Minière de Bisunzu’s (SMB) coltan mine in late June amid escalating violence in the area. The operation has seen a recent increase in violence between mineworkers and police hired by SMB to prevent… Read more

Cobalt: Changes to DRC ASM production edge closer

In late-June, the DRC Mines Ministry announced that the DRC will begin state-controlled buying of artisanal cobalt in about two months’ time, having been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. Roskill View In January, news broke that a new DRC state-owned company was being set up to buy and market all… Read more