Date: Oct 23, 2018

Recent times have seen the price of vanadium pentoxide reach close to US$30/lb, six times its sub-US$5.00/lb lows of 2016, due to supply/demand imbalances which have led to inventories being steadily drawn down since 2010. A significant cause is disruptions in supply, particularly in China, with closure of iron ore mining and smelting operations due to rationalisation in the industry and environmental issues – these magnetite iron ores are also a source of vanadium.

On the demand side we are seeing growing usage in the steel industry due to both the global growth in steel production but also with new Chinese standards requiring higher vanadium contents in steel to increase strength. The other forecast demand driver is for vanadium redox flow batteries (“VRFB”), which require high purity V2O5, with this not able to be produced from all traditional sources.

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