The roble had hit a record low after the West imposed sweeping sanctions on Russia for its aggression in Ukraine. Russia's president recently ordered exports of Russian gas to "unfriendly" countries to be settled in robles. The speaker of Russia's upper house of parliament said Moscow was prepared and could shift supplies to markets such as Asia if Europe refused to buy Russian energy.
European countries, which pay mostly in euros, say Russia has no right to reset contracts. The G7 rejected Russia's demand and urged companies not to agree to pay in robles, saying most contracts stipulated payment in euros or dollars. Wholesale gas prices in Europe have risen further recently on concerns about potential supply disruptions.
The Kremlin spokesman said, "According to the March 31 deadline set by Russia's president, we are developing all payment methods to get a simple, understandable, and feasible system for relevant European and international buyers,"
The markets and prices of more commodities like the graphite price would be affected because of the volatile international political situations.
Graphite price have moved higher again over the past month. Fine flake prices have soared.
Graphite Market News - The global graphite market is expected to grow from US$1.64 billion in 2017 to US$2.68 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 8.5%.
Graphite Company News - Syrah Resources Balama Mine back on track. Tirupati Graphite said that Mozambique granted a mining licence to Balama Central. NextSource Materials adds proprietary anode coating process.
Triton Minerals secures binding offtake agreement for Ancuabe commercial pilot plant. Magnis Energy Technologies New York lithium-ion battery plant is 40% complete. POSCO signs agreement with EcoGraf for battery cathode materials. ZEN Graphene Solutions announces name change to Zentek Ltd.
Welcome to the November edition of Graphite Miner News. November saw further increases in natural graphite prices and some substantial progress, as well as plenty of news from the graphite primary product.
Graphite price news
Over the last 30 days, China Graphite Flake 194 EXW spot prices are up 4.53% and China Flake-195+ EXW is up 2.93%. Note that 94-97% is considered most suitable for use in batteries; this is then increased to 99.9% purity to make "spherical" graphite for lithium ion batteries. Chinese prebaked anode 3% price fell by 2.06%.
Flake, amorphous and spherical graphite prices soar on high costs and strong demand ...... Fine flake graphite prices have risen by 16.67% over the past week, the largest one-week increase in three years.
On Thursday 30 March, Fastmarkets valued graphite electrodes, UHP, FOB China at US$4,250-4,560 per tonne, up US$620-790 (19.05%) since the first valuation of US$3,460-3,940 per tonne on 30 March 19 January 2022.
Similarly, Fastmarkets' FOB China estimate for high-power graphite electrodes on 30 March was US$3,600-3,780 per tonne, up US$610-630 (20.20%) from US$2,990-3,150 per tonne on 19 January.
Graphite electrodes are used in steel production and have been affected by sharp increases in the cost of raw materials. Prices of needle coke and petroleum coke have been rising steadily since the beginning of the year.
According to market sources, in China, the largest producer of synthetic graphite, coke prices have risen by 23.53% and 11.57% per month, respectively, at around 8,000-13,000 yuan ($1,243-2019) per ton and 6,000-7,500 yuan per ton.
In addition to rising raw material prices, the European Commission has also imposed anti-dumping duties on Chinese graphite electrodes, adding to the upward price pressure on European consumers.
Synthetic graphite for lithium-ion battery anodes also faces the same rising raw material costs as graphite electrodes. Furthermore, graphite electrodes and synthetic graphite for anodes can rely on the same graphitization process.
While China's anode market has grown, it has increased competition for these graphitization facilities, and as a result, product supply has tightened considerably, driving up costs and hindering the production of both materials. Those tensions are expected to persist this year even after the worst of China is over.
"Graphitization capacity may become less tight compared to the second half of last year, when China's power crunch was at its peak," a battery producer told Fastmarkets. "But we have to admit that supply is still generally tight across the anode supply chain, be it synthetic feedstock or graphitization."
While raw material prices have risen and graphitization has become more challenging, production in China has also been hampered by preventing the spread of the latest wave of Covid-19 infections.
"In addition to rising raw material prices, downstream consumers are also worried about supply amid the Covid-19 outbreak in China, causing some producers in northern China to disrupt shipments," said a source at the second anode producer.
Soaring costs and tight supplies of raw materials and processing facilities have led to tighter supplies of synthetic anode materials in the fast-growing electric vehicle industry, sources said.
High-quality graphite supplier
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Recently, the first press conference of the Boao Forum For Asia Annual Conference 2022 was held. Two flagship reports were released at the conference: "Asia's Economic Prospects and Integration Process 2022" and "Sustainable Asia and the World 2022-Green Transformation in Action in Asia".
The flagship report points out that the global economy will recover in 2021, and the pace of economic integration in the Asia-Pacific has not stopped even in the face of the impact of COVID-19. The Asia-Pacific region has provided new impetus for the world's economic recovery and institutional building.
The report gives an outlook on the Asian economy, noting that a number of factors will affect Asian economic growth. For example, mutated strains such as Delta and Omicron have become more transmissible, and many economies are experiencing epidemic peaks again. The Ukraine crisis has triggered geopolitical changes in Asia and Europe, leading to higher commodity prices, which may affect the global energy supply and energy transformation.
The report pointed out that the Asian economy will still be in the process of recovery in 2022, but the growth rate may moderate. According to the report, Asia's economic growth in 2022 is likely to be lower than the current IMF forecast, which is projected at 4.8%.
Affected by several factors, the supply of the graphite price is erratic and thus its prices are expected to go higher in the future.
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