Global Market Overview of Copper

October 2022

This report analyses the global production, consumption and prices of copper. While leading copper production countries Chile and Peru are facing challenges in 2022 from rising social backlashes and environmental concerns, global production of copper is set to maintain growth thanks to ongoing developments of new mines and expanding capabilities of current ones. Copper prices are already on a downward slope as demand slowed down amid economic stagnation and supply maintained growth.

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This report comes in PPT.

Key findings

Copper prices are projected to have already peaked in March 2022

Copper prices are expected to maintain steady decline over the outlook period, as global demand cools down amid stagnating economic growth, soaring inflation and rising interest rates. Supply is also expected to expand as new mines are set to join operations in 2023. With sufficient supply and slower demand from construction and automotive sectors, global copper prices are expected to continue declining, to drop below the lowest levels which were observed during the pandemic.

Construction and automotive demand to slow down as subsidies are phased out and inflation rises

The construction sector was among key drivers of the recovery of copper demand; however, the phasing out of subsidies, elevated uncertainties, rising prices of essential commodities and a robust rise in borrowing costs are anticipated to lead to slower residential construction demand over the forecast period. Likewise, economic uncertainties are likely to cool down demand for new vehicles, slowing down the automotive industry’s demand for copper products.

Renewable energy generation is gaining momentum, supporting global copper demand

In light of booming natural gas prices globally, countries are turning towards renewable electricity generation, fuelling demand for solar panels, onshore and offshore wind farms as well as major upgrades in electric grids and electricity storage facilities to be able to accommodate renewables entering the grid. Production of electricity generation facilities, transmission networks and new interconnections between countries are set to support global demand for copper.

Sustainability, decarbonisation and circular economy are on the agenda

Rising emissions permit costs, increasing pressure from society and governmental regulations push the copper industry to seek solutions to reduce its carbon footprint. Sustainability is projected to become an important trend in the industry over the long term. Companies are also expected to invest in recycling of scrap metal waste aiming to lower the negative environmental impact of their production.

Key findings
Key trends impacting the copper market in 2022
Despite turbulence, global copper production maintains growth over the review period
Surging global supply and slowdown in demand growth send copper prices downwards
After a surge in prices, the growing copper supply is set to cool down price pressure
Despite a setback in production in 2022, Chile remains the global leader in copper production
Production growth in top 10 countries
Chile: Global leader sees production stagnation in 2022, yet capacity addition to fuel growth
Peru: Production struggles to recover following COVID-19 downturn
Democratic Republic of Congo: Expanding investments into mining capabilities
Consumption bounced back after COVID- 19, supported by recovering industrial activities
China: Growing automotive sector to compensate for cooling-down construction demand
The US: Automotive production and expanding renewable generation to support consumption
India: Consumption grows on the back of rising renewable energy and construction demand
Top five consuming industries
Construction: Phasing out of subsidies and rising inflation to cool down the industry’s growth
Electricity distribution and control apparatus: Growth supported by rising renewables
Machinery: Rise of automation and strong industrial activities drive the industry’s demand
Motor vehicles and parts: Struggling logistics, rising costs and slowing demand
Insulated wire and cable: Transforming energy sector to compensate for slower construction
Top 10 country profile: Chile
Top 10 country profile: Peru
Top 10 country profile: Congo, Democratic Republic
Top 10 country profile: China
Top 10 country profile: USA
Top 10 country profile: Zambia
Top 10 country profile: Australia
Top 10 country profile: Mexico
Top 10 country profile: Russia
Top 10 country profile: Indonesia
Key challenges and opportunities
Economic forecasts


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