ILZSG: Refined lead metal supply exceeded demand, zinc metal supply in balance

Zinkerz (Foto: Initiative Zink)

Lisbon, Portugal – Provisional data reported to the International Lead and Zinc Study (ILZSG) indicate that world supply of refined lead metal exceeded demand by 26kt during the first half of 2015. Over the same period total reported stock levels declined by 93kt of which 48kt was due to a reduction in inventories held in LME warehouses. The global market for refined zinc metal was in oversupply by 157kt during the first quarter of 2015 and then in balance during the second quarter. Over the first six months of the year LME stocks fell by 225kt, Shanghai Futures Exchange Inventories increased by 97kt and stocks reported by producers rose by 90kt resulting in a net fall in total reported stocks of 38kt.

The key figures for lead include:

  • Global lead mine supply during the first six months of 2015 was at a similar level to that in the first half of 2014 with increases in China and Peru being balanced by falls in Australia and Mexico.
  • A 2.1 percent decrease in world refined lead metal output was principally due to reductions in output in Canada, China, Peru and the United States.
  • Usage of lead metal decreased by 4.3 percent in Europe, 8.6 percent in the United States, 2.4 percent in China and 4.5 percent in the Republic of Korea. Overall global demand fell by 2.6 percent.
  • At 414kt, Chinese imports of lead contained in lead concentrates were 3.7 percent lower than during the first half of 2014.

The key figures for zinc include:

  • Increases in Australia, China, India, Peru and Sweden were the main influences behind a 7.7 percent rise in global zinc mine production.
  • Global production of refined zinc metal increased by a significant 9.4 percent. This was mainly due to higher output in China and India.
  • World usage of refined zinc metal increased by 2.9 percent with demand rising by 3.4 percent in China and 0.9 percent in Europe but decreasing by 3.3 percent in the United States.
  • Chinese imports of zinc contained in zinc concentrates rose by 51.3 percent to total 604kt. In contrast, the country’s net imports of refined zinc metal decreased by 66.3 percent to 126kt.

Further details about the International Lead and Zinc Study Group (ILZSG) together with a full list of publications are available on the Group’s website at

Source: International Lead and Zinc Study Group (ILZSG)