Global lead long-term outlook Q3 2020
The impacts from the coronavirus pandemic will continue to reverberate through lead markets for years to come. We have revised our mine output to fall by -6.3% in 2020 after being hit with temporary idling of mines worldwide plus some reclosures after new flare-ups of Covid-19 infection. This will be followed by fairly modest expansion averaging 2.0% over the subsequent five years. The improved demand situation in some economies, led chiefly by China, has brought an increase in our forecast for 2020 by 165 kt over the previous LTO, now totalling 12.2 million tonnes of consumption. The smaller increase in total production therefore means our forecast refined lead surplus for 2020 falls by about 100 kt to total 377 kt excess refined metal. The following years also show a reduced surplus, reaching an essentially balanced market by 2024.