Japanese Chemical Trader blog

Japan Chemical Trading Blog

Nickel Turns to Oversupply in 2014

According to a Japan Metal Bulletin article on October 17, Sumitomo Metal Mining announced that expected demand and supply of nickel will be “15,000 tons of oversupply in 2014 and 32,000 tons of undersupply in 2015”.

Nickel is a metal used for stainless steel, plating and batteries. Russia, Canada, Indonesia, and the Philippines are the main producing countries.
Immediately after the Indonesian government put a ban on the export of nickel ore in January, with the purpose of promoting development in domestic smelting and processing industries, undersupply was expected for 2014.
However, the alternative supply from the Philippines was more than expected and, as a result, there has been an oversupply in 2014.

In 2015, while there will be a growth in demand, stock in China is expected to become scarce, leading to a lack of supply.
If this is the case, the current decreasing trend of the nickel price may reverse at some point of time.