Strong China boosts world nickel demand: rationale and risks

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Report summary

Chinese stainless melt production has accelerated in 2016. This is due to the ramp up of 6Mt/a of new melt shop capacity as well as a stimulus-driven improvement in demand. As a result, world nickel demand will increase by around 9% this year, to 2Mt. As the Chinese ramp-up will continue in 2017, we anticipate similar growth in world nickel demand next year. But we are not so certain that the Chinese market can absorb all the new stainless steel. So in this insight we examine some of the risks that could have a moderating short to medium term influence.

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