Skip Navigation LinksMy Argus / News / News Story

Printer friendly

Battery demand lifts China lithium carbonate imports

07 Mar 2018 12:53 GMT
Battery demand lifts China lithium carbonate imports

Beijing, 7 March (Argus) — China's lithium carbonate imports rose sharply in January in response to steady demand from domestic lithium-ion battery manufacturers.

China imported 3,114t of lithium carbonate in January, up by 44pc year on year from 2,163t, customs data show.

Imports from Chile, the largest supplier, rose by 3.2pc year on year to 1,468t from 1,422t, while shipments from Argentina surged by 115pc to 1,223t. China received 307t of imports from Japan, up by 91pc year on year from 161t.

China imported 30,655t of lithium carbonate in 2017, up by 41pc year on year from 21,794t in 2016, and by 177pc from 11,053t in 2015.

Fast growth in China's electric vehicle production has boosted physical demand for lithium salts, including carbonate, hydroxide and chloride, which are used to make the ternary cathode material in lithium-ion batteries.

China is on target to produce 1mn units of new energy vehicles in 2018, up by 26pc from last year's 794,000 units. A newly announced policy to promote the use of batteries with higher energy density should further lift lithium demand.

Argus assessed spot lithium carbonate prices steady at Yn150,000-160,000/t yesterday.