Proposal to launch prevailing contracts price for spodumene, amend specifications of spodumene min 6% Li2O, cif China assessment

Fastmarkets is proposing to launch a monthly assessment to reflect the prevailing price range for spodumene concentrate contracts on a cif China basis in response to market feedback

Discussions with market participants have indicated a need for greater clarity as to the price distinction between spodumene concentrates traded on a spot basis versus material traded under term contract arrangements.

Fastmarkets therefore proposes to launch a monthly assessment reflecting the prevailing prices achievable under new term contracts for spodumene concentrates, min 6% Li2O, on a cif China basis to supplement our existing coverage of the spodumene spot market.

The new prevailing contracts assessment for spodumene would run alongside the existing spodumene spot assessment, and would not replace it.

To aid the distinction between these two prices, we are also proposing to amend the name of our existing spodumene assessment MB-LI-0012 from ‘Spodumene min 6% Li2O, cif China, $/tonne’ to ‘Spodumene min 6% Li2O, spot price, cif China, $/tonne’.

The physical and chemical specifications for both the spot and prevailing contracts price assessments are identical.

Following feedback from market participants, the minimum cargo size eligible for inclusion in Fastmarkets’ existing spodumene spot assessment is also being specified at 1,000 tonnes as part of this proposal, which was not reflected in the specifications in Fastmarkets’ latest methodology in December 2021.

The specification for the new price assessment and proposed amendment to specification of the existing spodumene assessment are as below, with clarification of the latter in italics:

Name: Spodumene min 6% Li2O, contract price, cif China, $/tonne

Quality: A mineral concentrate accepted by buyers for conversion in lithium chemicals used in battery applications and with the following chemical composition: Li2O 6% (min 5.7 Li2O and max 6.1% Li2O accepted if it can be normalized to 6%); Fe2O3 < 1.3% (max 1.5% Fe2O3 accepted if it can be normalized to < 1.3%), H2O <10%

Quantity: 5,000 tonnes

Location: cif China

Timing: up to 1 year

Unit: USD/tonne

Publication: Monthly, last Wednesday of the month, 3-4pm London time

MB-LI-0012, Spodumene min 6% Li2O, spot price, cif China, $/tonne

Quality: A mineral concentrate accepted by buyers for conversion in lithium chemicals used in battery applications and with the following chemical composition: Li2O 6% (min 5.7 Li2O and max 6.1% Li2O accepted if it can be normalized to 6%); Fe2O3 < 1.3% (max 1.5% Fe2O3 accepted if it can be normalized to < 1.3%), H2O <10%

Quantity: 1,000 tonnes

Location: cif China

Timing: 90 days

Unit: USD/tonne

Publication: Fortnightly, Thursday, 3-4pm London time

Notes: When the pricing day falls on a bank holiday in England and Wales, this price will be rolled over.

The consultation period for the proposed price launch and assessment changes will start on Monday February 21 and will end one month later on Monday March 21. The proposed launch will take place, subject to market feedback, on Thursday March 24.

To provide feedback on this consultation, or if you would like to provide price information by becoming a data submitter to the lithium prices, please contact Dalila Ouerghi and Zihao Li by email at: pricing@fastmarkets.com. Please add the subject heading ‘FAO: Dalila Ouerghi/Zihao Li re: lithium price assessments.’

To see all Fastmarkets’ pricing methodology and specification documents, go to https://www.fastmarkets.com/about-us/methodology.

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