Electric cars materials market: new fields for investment
The $378.2 million fund invests more than 10 precent of assets in materials used in electric vehicles industry. Two primary targets for investors at the moment are Orocobre (Australia) and Albemarle (New York) whose shares were rising sharply during the last year.
Also, governmental policy about electrical cars inspires the market growth, and it creates the opportunity for investment. This opportunity is estimated for $235 billion since the number of electro-powered cars, and hybrid-engine vehicles rose above 1 million last year (according to International Energy Agency information). Experts forecast a worldwide growth, which may result in 3.9 million cars till 2020, mostly powered by lithium-ion batteries.
Electric automobile industry needs resources like NMC cathodes (means lithium), graphite, and rare earth metals, mined by China companies like Xiamen Tungsten. The most world lithium comes from Argentina, Bolivia and Chile (“Lithium Triangle” countries). The Chinese price of a lithium suitable for battery use is almost $20000 per tone nowadays, and it has grown three times higher comparatively to the last year.
Albemarle, Australia’s Lithium Power International and Orocobre invest in lithium production and shipment projects like facilities in Chile and Argentina, and their shares grow continuously. Besides lithium production, companies like Sherritt International are planning to increase cobalt production to meet the future market demand, since the cobalt prices will rise by 45 percent from current level till 2020, according to experts. The graphite production sector is still dominated mostly by China companies who expects a great increase in production till 2020 (additional 150000-170000 ton of anode-suitable graphite).