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  • Pressures in Asian markets squeeze refractory and chemical minerals IM December 2014

    Global increases for calcium carbonate and kaolin Refractory minerals under strain in China Read More

  • The Indian graphite industry - why we need to take notice IM December 2014

    As companies battle to bring their graphite projects, IM looks at the possibilities emerging in India. Read More

  • Graphite projects and reserves - are we facing an oversupply situation? IM December 2014

    This year has seen two graphite mines —Woxna and Loharano — come into production and a lot of excitement as Tesla’s Gigafactory was announced. However, prices have remained muted and as time ticks on, a strategic partner is yet to be announced to supply the electric vehicle producer. IM Editor Siobhan Lismore-Scott asks the industry their opinions on the market and projects in the pipeline — both existing and, in the case of Vietnam and India, potential for growth. Read More

  • Talga eyes graphene potential IM December 2014

    Graphene has the potential to cause a high-tech revolution in a number of industries, but the material’s commercial breakthrough has been hindered by the difficulty of producing pristine graphene on a bulk scale. Talga resources claims to have broken this impasse, following metallurgical developments at its Vittangi project. James Sean Dickson, Reporter, visited the company’s site in Sweden to assess its progress. Read More

  • Graphite: The six steps to striking success IM December 2014

    This report aims to compare and contrast 21 listed graphite plays (13 ASX, seven TSX and one AIM) and shed some light on important factors to consider when assessing graphite (and indeed other industrial mineral) projects1. Andrew Scogings, IM Consultant, and Jason Chesters, Resource Analyst at Patersons Securities, look into the listed companies using parameters set out by Patersons in August. The project list is by no means exhaustive, and should be seen as a general perspective on the current state of play. Read More

  • Australia: End of the mining gloom? IM December 2014

    The downturn of the global “commodities supercyle” and slowing raw material demand in China has been felt keenly in Australia’s resources sector. But while proponents of Australian mining admit the industry isn’t quite as mighty as it used to be, they say that there are still plenty of reasons to be positive Down Under, Siobhan Lismore-Scott, Editor and Laura Syrett, Prices Editor, discover. Read More

  • South East Asia: Room to grow IM December 2014

    Although regulatory difficulties in the past may have discouraged foreign investment, South East Asia is being touted as a region ripe for development with many underexploited resources and demand for industrial minerals in a variety of markets including refractories, glass, ceramics, construction and proppants. Andrew Scogings, IM Correspondant, Kasia Patel, Deputy Editor, and Tran Kim Phuong, Contributor Read More

  • Diary Dates December 2014 IM December 2014

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  • Prime Meridian enters global market with ceramics proppants buy IM December 2014

    The Canadian junior hopes to gain a strategic foothold in the region through the majority acquisition and expansion of Indian ceramics proppants producer, Hallmark. Kasia Patel, Deputy Editor Read More

  • Alkane well positioned to bring Dubbo to fruition IM November 2014

    Alkane look to zircon markets with the Dubbo project Read More

  • Potash and barite supply tightens while fused magnesia faces overcapacity IM November 2014

    Antimony, iodine suffer from slow China growth; Tough times continue for TiO2 pigment market; FM producers storing up trouble for the future Read More

  • Northern’s dysprosium hopes with Brown IM November 2014

    Andrew Scogings, IM Correspondent, looks into Northern Minerals’ Brown project in Western Australia and discusses the rare earths markets it is targeting. Read More

  • Rare earths recycling and recovery: the two sides of the industry IM November 2014

    The rare earths supply risk and consequent panic buying that emerged in 2011 paved the way for sluggish demand, oversupply and low prices. In light of this, recycling rare earths from downstream products might appear an unnecessary economic burden. Antonio Torrisi, Reporter, investigates how this technology can integrate with new mining projects to promote future stability and sustainability in the rare earths market. Read More

  • Fluorspar hopes pinned on a fluorochemical winter solstice IM November 2014

    Fluorspar has experienced a depressed market, characterised by sluggish demand and low prices in the last two years. Now, the industry is facing a crucial moment with new regulations on refrigerants that could irreversibly affect future consumption. Antonio Torrisi, Reporter, explores the possible consequences for the fluorspar market and the new markets that could help sustain its future demand. Read More

  • The Battery Show ’14: The future of Li-ion batteries IM November 2014

    Raw materials and R&D costs “prohibitive”; energy storage solutions key to future demand Read More

  • Thunderbirds are go! Sheffield Resources WA zircon deposit. IM October 2014 issue

    Thunderbird deposit can fulfil 8% of global zircon demand according to Sheffield Resources; metallurgical testwork confirms high quality product using conventional process. Read More

  • IM Prices IM October 2014 issue

    Zircon buyers thrift; ilmenite further to fall Read More

  • Clouds gather for minsands as energy minerals renege on premature optimism IM October 2014 issue

    Potash prices strong to 2017, says SocGen; lithium and graphite’s Tesla boost flattened Read More

  • Diary Dates IM October 2014 issue

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  • Shifting trends reshape world soda ash market IM October 2014 issue

    While glass and chemical demand are expected to remain the staple drivers of global soda ash consumption for the next decade, the latest annual study on the industry by IHS reveals that adjustments throughout the supply chain are changing the way the market operates. Read More

  • The use of naturally occurring minerals in animal feed IM October 2014 issue

    The term usually applied to food prepared for domesticated livestock is ‘fodder,’ which is primarily composed of natural organic ingredients such as hay, straw, silage, pelleted foods, oils, grains, legumes and molasses as well as spent grain from breweries and distilleries and DDGS (distiller’s dried grains with solubles), from bio-ethanol production. Frank Hart* looks into the use of naturally-occurring minerals in animal feed. Read More

  • China under the spotlight IM October 2014 issue

    As China has been a driving force in TiO2 and zircon demand Ed Barlow, China country manager at TZ Minerals International, looks at whether the slowdown in the country’s construction sector is a cause for concern. Read More

  • TiO2 feedstocks: mind the gap IM October 2014 issue

    Following recent improvements in TiO2 demand, Kasia Patel, Deputy Editor, looks at why feedstock producers have yet to benefit, as well as concerns about China’s slow down. Read More

  • Developing Vietnam’s mineral sands for the rare earths market IM October 2014 issue

    Vietnam has 3,260km of coastline, along which the main sand deposits containing ilmenite, rutile, zircon and other heavy minerals are distributed. Tran Kim Phuong* outlines how these deposits can be of use for the rare earths — or the TiO2 — market. Read More

  • Mineral industry gears up for post-summer activity IM September 2014

    Potash miners unlikely to accept price erosion; Soda ash prices buoyed by capacity decreases; Substitution threat looms over zircon prices Read More

  • Digging deep: geopolitics of shale resources IM September 2014

    Owing to recent political events in Ukraine, and indirectly those in the Middle East, concerns have mounted in relation to oil and gas delivery to Europe, with some analysts suggesting that North American shale resources may need to be called upon. However, due to basic economic factors, a more realistic solution would be for the EU and Ukraine to develop their own shale resources but, so far, with the exception of the UK, and to a lesser extent Poland and Spain, no large-scale efforts are being undertaken, finds Vasili Nicoletopoulos.* Read More

  • Tackling NIMBYism in frac sand mining IM September 2014

    US gas consumers have benefited from low gas prices as a result of the domestic fracking boom. However, when frac sand mining or well drilling takes place on their doorsteps, the public have been less enthusiastic. Read More

  • New opportunities in refractory and foundry markets for chromite IM September 2014

    The refractory and foundry markets have shown weak demand for non-metallurgical chromite in the last two years, especially in the EU and US. Antonio Torrisi, reporter, investigates the causes of persisting weakness and new opportunities for the sectors in developing economies Read More

  • Thessally Resources view prospects in Australia’s magnesite market IM September 2014

    Raw material could be used to produce CCM and DBM; Thessally Resources historic data validated as it begins exploring market options. Read More

  • Raw materials trends in refractories IM September 2014

    Over the last two years IM has reported on the shifting trends in the refractories industry, with China looking to reduce wastage and increase energy efficiency. Ted Dickson* explores these various trends and asks – how will this shift impact raw material supply? Read More

  • Advances in medical uses for alumino-silicate clay minerals IM September 2014

    Frank Hart* addreses the importance of clays in medicine, including kaolin used to cure stomach upset and the promising future of halloysite nanotubes. Read More

  • Summer holiday for agriminerals, no break for mineral sands IM August 2014

    Agrimineral demand recovery continues as flame retardant chemical price growth stutters; no gains in sight for mineral sands Read More

  • Diary Dates August 2014 IM August 2014

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  • Is there any room for additional fertiliser supply? IM August 2014

    Owing to its solid long term fundamentals, producers and juniors have been developing new fertiliser projects. But with recent developments, lower prices and uncertain demand, this is not a race that all will finish. Read More

  • China’s action to reform the rare earths market IM August 2014

    Following the WTO ruling against China’s rare earths export quotas, the country has started setting new policies to reform its domestic market, while formally appealing against the ruling. Yinjie Zhou, Yongjian Shi and Antonio Torrisi investigate the several strategies Beijing is considering to tackle environmental pollution and smuggling and push up prices. Read More

  • Carbon capture: the added values of mineral carbonation IM August 2014

    Although the global warming potential of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions has always been acknowledged by the scientific community and governments worldwide, CO2 has been historically undervalued in the market place, which did not encourage companies to reduce emissions. Read More

  • Speciality product prices outstrip mineral values in traditional volume markets IM July 2014 issue

    Antimony prices settle for summer months; Magnesia stabilises as spot market sleeps Read More

  • Diary Dates July 2014 IM July 2014 issue

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  • Mineral-based gas adsorbents: the halloysite example IM July 2014 issue

    Halloysite has found niche applications in a variety of industries, and one such example is the use of halloysite nanotubes for gas component adsorption. Read More

  • Shifting sands: substitution and expanding markets IM July 2014 issue

    Zircon and its derivatives face an uncertain future owing to competition from substitute materials, but where is additional demand expected to come from? Kasia Patel, Chief Reporter, investigates. Read More

  • Wollastonite: an important but controversial search for more sources IM July 2014 issue

    An increasing demand for wollastonite, both in existing and emerging new markets, is pushing companies to look for new resources of this rare industrial mineral. Antonio Torrisi, Reporter, investigates how exploration in North America faced opposition on the basis of environmental and legal issues, which could lead to operational delays and increasing costs. Read More

  • Latin America - a land of missed opportunity? IM July 2014 issue

    Latin America’s geology makes it a region with the potential to become a heavyweight in the global mineral industry. However, problems ranging from regulatory uncertainty to corruption and bureaucracy have historically prevented it from realising its immense potential, Siobhan Lismore-Scott, Editor, explains. Read More

  • IM Prices June 2014 IM June 2014

    Bold indicates price change from previous month (it may have changed more than once during the month). All prices are in US$ and quoted per tonne unless indicated. It is not possible to publish prices for all industrial minerals and grades in the space available, these pages comprise a selection of frequently traded minerals. For a wider range and more detail on mineral prices, we refer you to Price Listing on For any information, or to make a comment on prices, please contact our Prices Editor Laura Syrett at Read More

  • Prices lag rising consumption in industrial markets while speciality grades look up IM June 2014

    Bauxite values stable following Q1 price rises; Paper grade kaolin prices increase as costs bite; Rutile “tough” business in China-led market Read More

  • Diary dates June 2014 IM June 2014

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  • Appraisal of Industrial Minerals in Turkey IM June 2014

    Turkey has an abundant variety of industrial raw materials and is in an ideal location to deliver high volume industrial minerals to European, Asian and African markets at competitive prices. Read More

  • Magnesia products under the radar IM June 2014

    Although refractory markets remain the staple of most magnesia production, CCM markets and fire retardants also offer up attractive opportunities. Read More

  • Burning up: A look at the deadburned magnesia market IM June 2014

    Vasili Nicoletopoulos takes a look at the global dead burned magnesia market with particular reference to the varying practices being undertaken by companies inside and outside of China. Read More

  • Oilfield minerals - a shifting landscape IM June 2014

    North American demand for oilfield minerals has never been stronger, but now other countries, such as China, are looking to increase their production of oil and gas from shale reserves. As a result, the global proppant and drilling mud industries are seeing changes in traditional supply chain patterns, exacerbated by new regulations and changes to product requirements, Emma Hughes, Deputy Editor and Nilima Choudhury, Chief Reporter, discover. Read More

  • Is there enough demand for new TiO2 feedstock producers? IM May 2014 issue

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