By Chris Berry (@cberry1)
For a PDF of this note, please click here.
I'm just back and recovering from a week in Las Vegas where the 8th Annual Lithium Supply and Markets Conference hosted by Metal Bulletin took place. Sentiment in the industry is overwhelmingly positive as the ubiquity of technology and the cost deflation associated with that technology (EVs, consumer electronics) means that lithium ion battery chemistry will remain central to this growth. The event was attended by major lithium producers including Albemarle (ALB:NYSE), SQM (SQM:NYSE), and FMC (FMC:NYSE), cathode manufacturers, investment professionals, and junior mining companies, so coming away with a clear view of the market was facilitated.
It looks like my demand estimates of ~270,000 tonnes LCE by 2020 will be met. Supply, on the other hand, is always a wild card in the mining sector and my proprietary estimates