Critical Minerals | Daily Chemical Reactions

Weak Clean Energy Mineral Markets Challenge Investment, Fortify China’s Dominant Position
January 3, 2024
Commodities Mentioned:
Copper, Nickel, Lithium, Ethylene, Bromine, Crude Oil, Natural Gas, Propane, Propylene, Gasoline, Hydrogen, Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), Carbon, Biodiesel, Polystyrene, Hydrocarbons
Companies Mentioned:
SQM, Codelco, Posco Holdings, Albemarle, Lanxess, Rongsheng Petrochemical, Aramco, Brenntag, Nexeo Plastics, Equate, Sinopec, Songwon, Samyang, Verdant, Aekyung Chemical, LG Chem, Shell, GACL, OMV, Chevron, Energy Transfer, Eni, Iberdrola, Petrobras, Mubadala, Vaalco Energy, Williams, Tesla, BYD, Dow, Bloom Energy, Ineos, Asahi Kasei, Ami Organics, Topsoe, Engie, Vestas, EPDR, Adani, ADNOC

Monthly Report – Critical Minerals

Weak Clean Energy Mineral Markets Challenge Investment, Fortify China’s Dominant Position

Key Findings

  • General Thoughts: The C-MACC Clean Energy Mineral Index fell 53% in 2023, closing the year at YTD low, as energy transition growth failed to offset a weak economy and rising supply that favors slower investment.
  • Supply Chain/Commodities:  Lithium was the worst performer in the C-MACC Clean Energy Mineral Index in 2023, with copper reflecting the most support. Separately, we discuss PDH-unit and bromine cuts in China.
  • Energy/Upstream: Brent Crude Oil reflects support relative to natural gas values in Asia and Europe at the start of 2024. Cheap US natural gas/NGLs compared to Europe and Asia drive more global consumer activity.
  • Sustainability/Energy Transition: We discuss Tesla, BYD, and Rivian news in the EV market, flag the falling costs of battery storage amid lower inputs, and a clean energy material upcycle setting up for 2025-2030.
  • Downstream/Other Chemicals: Weak US and Europe PMI postings are not surprising amid oversupply and weak pricing, with improvement likely to be consumer-led in 2024 – expectations already appear high.

Exhibit 1: The C-MACC Clean Energy Mineral Index Fell 53% in 2023, Settling at a YTD low to Close the Year.

Source: Bloomberg, C-MACC Analysis, January 2024

See PDF below for all charts, tables and diagrams

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