Russian miner Nornickel has published a new overview nickel market, prepared on the basis of a fundamental analysis of world economic and industry data.

The company expects that in 2022 the growth in demand for refined nickel will amount to 3.17 million tonnes, up by 17% on-year, Kallanish notes. This scenario reflects the current price environment, high inflation in the world’s leading economies and uncertainty of the global macroeconomic forecast, the enterprise claims.

The nickel market is expected to run a moderate surplus of around 40,000 t in 2022, mostly low-grade nickel. This leaves Nornickel’s previous forecast virtually unchanged.

However, unprecedented price volatility, new restrictions due to outbreaks of the coronavirus pandemic, rising inflationary pressures and possible production restrictions amid extremely limited nickel exchange inventories could significantly affect our 2022 forecast, it warns.

In 2023, Nornickel forecasts an increase in the market surplus to around 100,000 t, concentrated in the low-grade nickel market, due to the introduction of new facilities for the production of crude ferronickel in Indonesia. As well as an increase in the production of chemical compounds and a further increase in the production of nickel metal, powder and ferronickel.

A 16% increase in nickel supply in 2023 is forecast to outpace a 14% year-on-year increase in consumption in the stainless steel and battery sectors, the company says.

However, greater growth in stainless steel and electric vehicle (EV) production could lead to a larger increase in demand for nickel, while the increase in the production of crude ferronickel in Indonesia and other projects may not materialize again, it adds.

Earlier, Nornickel said it has no plans to leave Western markets yet, after the Russian invasion in Ukraine and new Western sanctions again Russia and received permission from the Russian government to be listed abroad.

The company plans to produce 205,000-215,000 t of nickel this year. Total nickel output in Q1 was up by 10% on-year to 55,000 t.