Category: From The Editor

US Drags Its Feet on Mineral Policy

While thumbing through the news in this month’s E&MJ, readers will notice a few mining companies that are working with customers to attract investment for the supply of minerals rather than simply selling ore. As an example, a European battery maker (Umicore) purchased a cobalt refinery in Finland from an American mining company (Freeport-McMoRan). Umicore also struck an agreement with Swiss miner Glencore to buy cobalt from its mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The refined materials will be shipped to a battery factory in Poland. This is one example that demonstrates how European companies secured a supply chain for lithium-ion batteries and battery-grade minerals, essentially preparing for future demand and profiting from it.
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Trade Dispute and Market Uncertainty Will Pass

Last year at this time, E&MJ was talking about how great the copper market looked. A perfect storm was in the making, one where stocks were low and falling, prices were rising, which is good for miners, but not necessarily the consumer, and rosy forecasts offered several reasons to be optimistic. Then, the trade rhetoric between China and the U.S. put copper and most of the other mined commodities in a holding pattern. This now seems to be a reoccurring theme for May.
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