Vanadium: Prices soar as new rebar regulations take effect

Vanadium

Vanadium pentoxide prices averaged US$24/lb in October, while European ferrovanadium prices reached over US$118/kg V. Prices for the month averaged around US$114/kg V. Prices are now at thirteen-year highs. In 2005, nominal prices reached over US$120/kg (US$155/kg in real terms).  

Roskill view: Tightness in feedstock supply has underpinned the meteoric rise in vanadium prices this year but the positive outlook for demand has also played a part. Roskill forecasts steady growth in demand for vanadium in steel, benefiting not only from volume growth in the market, but also from an increasing intensity of use of vanadium in key countries including China. This has been accelerated through Chinese regulation.  

On November 1st, China’s new high-strength rebar standard will take effect. It is designed to limit the use of inferior steels in construction. The standard eliminates low strength Grade 2 rebar and sets out specifications for three different high strength standards: Grade 3 (400MPa), Grade 4 (500MPa), and Grade 5 (600MPa). These will require 0.03% V, 0.06% V, and more than 0.1% V respectively. As such, if enforced adequately, these new regulations could lead to a significant increase in vanadium demand in China in 2019 and beyond.

Roskill’s new Vanadium Global Industry, Markets & Outlook report is due to be published in Q1 2019.  

To discuss the vanadium market with Roskill, contact Jack Bedder: jack@roskill.com