Recently, Nickel metal prices continued to surge. The Futures Nickel prices of London Stock Exchange hit a 28-month high and the nickel metal prices of Shanghai Futures Exchange was a strong closing limit yesterday.
The price boom of nickel metal is related to new energy vehicles. SaadRahim, chief economist of Trafigura, said in an interview that the demand of nickel sulfate, the key raw material for lithium ion battery, would increase by 50% in 2030 to 2 million tons. The battery may use more nickel and less cobalt in the future.
And even Mush, founder and CEO of Tesla, also said the battery for new energy vehicles should be called nickel graphite, because the cathode is mainly nickel.
According to publicly available data, the current lithium battery formula, 80% nickle in NCA cathode, 33% nickle in NMC cathode and 20% nickle in LMO-NMC cathode. The insider said with the development of vehicle battery formulations which becomes more mature for new energy, the use of nickel will only become more. Because nickel can increase the battery energy density and reduce the use of raw materials.
Data show that the current new energy vehicles account for only 1% of the automotive market, and the demand for nickel is 70,000 tons, accounting for about 3% of the nickel market. However, in the future, the popularization of new energy vehicles is the trend of the times. Four countries have given a definite ban on the sale of fuel trucks. China and Germany have also indicated that they are setting a ban on sales.
Therefore, with the popularity of new energy vehicles, when the market share of new energy vehicles reaches 6%, the demand for nickel will reach 167,000 tons. When the share of new energy vehicles in the market reaches 10% and the demand for nickel reaches 400,000 tons, the global nickel supply may be insufficient.
And when the market share of new energy vehicles is 100%, the demand for nickel is 2.2 million tons, which is several times of the current 70,000 tons.