Great expectations… But can the industry really satisfy all its stakeholders’ demands?
With demand growth for traditional commodities transitioning from "lower for longer" to "lower forever" one could be forgiven for assuming that meeting future supply needs would be relatively straightforward. To the contrary though, it appears that those who provide the world with the minerals and metals critical for its growth and prosperity are finding the task increasingly difficult.
One of the main challenges is the imperative for the industry to satisfy the seemingly divergent expectations of its many stakeholders.
A number of key actors are clear about their expectations…
- Investors. Cost over-runs, project delays and exuberant M&A contributed to relatively poor shareholder returns from the industry over the last decade. The hangover has left investors reluctant to commit funds to the mining sector without the certainty of returns commensurate to (perceived) risk.
- Host countries and global policy-makers. Rapidly evolving domestic and international ESG requirements are creating a dynamic ethical, financial and environmental regulatory environment that makes planning and execution complex.
- Consumers. Those who rely on commodities for their commercial, or political, success often seek levels of supply security as aspirational as their R&D departments’ vision statements.
- Society. The extractives sector elicits an enduringly negative perception which belies the critical role it plays in almost every facet of modern life. This leaves the industry vulnerable to political brinkmanship in an increasingly tumultuous and unpredictable environment.
…This is squeezing the supply chain from mine to market.
These expectations are already providing difficult to realise, with companies both large and small increasingly struggling to:
- Find, acquire or develop high-quality ore bodies;
- Control escalating construction costs, development timeframes and operating expenses;
- Maintain business continuity and retain tenure; and, ultimately,
- Deliver the financial returns demanded from host countries and investors.
Stakeholders have clear and understandable expectations of the industry. But a time is fast approaching where a collective debate must be had to discuss whether all great expectations can be satisfied all the time.
LME Forum Agenda
08:00 AM – 08:45 AM: Registration & Refreshments
08:45 AM – 08:50 AM: Welcome & Introduction
A reflection on industry highs and lows from 2019 and an introduction to the speaker sessions.
08:50 AM – 09:45 AM: Commodity Outlooks – Copper, Aluminium, Battery Raw Materials
Wood Mackenzie's view on each commodity’s short- and long-term outlooks, including key events to watch for in 2020.
09:45 AM – 10:10 AM: 2019 – an anomaly or new normality?
We are witnessing a paradigm shift in above ground risk. We may need to fundamentally re-evaluate our view on value-chain resilience. If so, what might be the impact on global supply?
10:10 AM – 10:40 AM: Coffee & Networking
10:40 AM – 11:35 AM: Commodity Outlooks – Nickel, Lead, Zinc
Wood Mackenzie's view on each commodity's short and long-term outlooks, including key events to watch for in 2020.
11:35 AM – 12:00 PM: Metals - supporting or stymieing the world’s response to climate change?
Could the metals needed to support the Energy Transition journey under a 2° scenario actually be sourced or will the speed of climate change mitigation become constrained by supply-side bottlenecks?
12:00 PM – 12:20 PM: The Mining & Metals sector in 2020
What investment is going to be needed into the sector to meet demand? Can the competing needs of industry stakeholders be aligned to stimulate capital inflow and what impact might a near-term recession have?
12:20 PM – 12:30 PM: Wrap up
A recap of the headline takeaways and an introduction to the key themes that Wood Mackenzie’s Mining & Metals Research will be paying particular attention to over the next 12 months.
12:30 PM – 13:30 PM: Networking Lunch
Early Bird attendance fee: £290. Valid until 31 August 2019
Regular attendance fee: £390
All prices ex. VAT