Fastmarkets launches European nickel sulfate premium assessments

Read more about how we are bringing transparency to diverging global nickel markets

Fastmarkets, the industry-leading cross-commodity price reporting agency (PRA), takes a significant stride towards fostering transparency in the battery cathode market with the launch of premium assessments for nickel sulfate in Europe.

Nickel sulfate is a vital component in nickel-rich cathode lithium-ion batteries, particularly nickel, manganese, cobalt (NMC) chemistry batteries. The price launch is a significant step towards fostering greater transparency in the battery raw materials market.

Fastmarkets’ decision to launch these prices comes at a time when EV battery demand is forecast to rise at a CAGR of 16% over the period 2023-2033, with demand in Europe particularly set to increase by 12% to 790 GWh by 2033, according to Fastmarkets’ research team.

The battery industry currently represents 13% of global nickel consumption in 2023. This figure is set to rise to 25% by 2033, resulting in significant shifts in nickel consumption.

On top of this, regional price divergence has been a consistent trend across nickel markets globally. Production of class 2, non-LME deliverable nickel products is growing from production hubs such as Indonesia.

These new nickel sulfate assessments for Europe will contribute to Fastmarkets’ existing suite of nickel sulfate prices, which include assessments for ex-works China and cif Japan and South Korea. The separation in price also reflects the diverging priorities of global consumers, with markets looking to localise supply chains.

Raju Daswani, CEO of Fastmarkets, added: “The launch of nickel sulfate price assessments in Europe complements our existing prices in Asia and underscores Fastmarkets’ commitment to promoting transparency in the dynamic battery cathode market. With the booming demand for electric vehicle batteries, particularly in Europe, our decision to provide these assessments is timely. Fastmarkets is proud to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the battery raw materials market.”

The premium assessment will be published monthly, on an in-warehouse Rotterdam basis, with a base nickel content of 22.3%. The new prices will be published on the first Friday of the month at 4 pm London time. The specifications of these prices can be found here.

As well as price reporting, Fastmarkets – through its team of 20 battery raw materials analysts – provides market insight reports and data covering major cathode and anode active materials, including recycling/black mass. Short-term analysis and forecasts are published weekly, while long-term forecasts are released quarterly, spanning a 10-year outlook horizon and providing a deep dive into the supply-demand dynamics of key materials in the value chain. The team also produces a monthly battery cost index report that offers indicative costs of the cathode, anode and battery cell production.

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