Fastmarkets' new European magnesia prices track shifts in market dynamics

By William Clarke
Published: Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Fastmarkets IM's new European fused and dead burned magnesia prices better reflect the current shape of the market.

Fastmarkets IM has launched new magnesia prices to better reflect the market for this refractory mineral in Europe.

China remains by far the largest producer of most refractory materials, including magnesia. Fastmarkets tracks developments in this market with its range of fob China prices.

But Chinese supply has not been completely reliable in recent years. An increased focus on pollution controls leaves many Chinese mineral companies vulnerable to sudden restrictions and shutdowns. As a result, consumers are increasingly looking for alternative sources.

The launch of the new fused magnesia price reflects shifting trends in the magnesia market, and is intended to leave more flexible assessments that can take in a wider range of price inputs, increasing liquidity and usability.

These fluctuations in supply come even as magnesia continues to gain ground as a refractory material in the European steel industry, which itself is in a period of growth.

As demand for dead burned magnesia in Europe increases, a number of companies are beginning production of dead burned magnesia, or switching existing calcined or fused magnesia capacity to dead burned.

Fastmarkets is launching its new dead burned magnesia price to reflect this trend.

Additionally, Fastmarkets is launching a new fused magnesia cif Europe price to reflect the fact that a large majority of fused magnesia consumed in Europe is imported form China.

A large proportion of magnesia production in Europe is based in Russia and Turkey, and incurs significant freight costs when sold in western European markets.

The cif Europe fused magnesia price will further allow for the inclusion of new origins entering the market, as long as they conform to the Fastmarkets specification.

This cif price is intended to replace the existing fob Europe fused magnesia price, whose discontinuation is under consultation.

Click here to see details on the new prices.

The first assessment of the new prices will be made on May 21, and the third Tuesday of every month thereafter.  

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