EV Demand Growth, Indonesia Production Ramp Up Drive Cobalt Market in 2022

The Cobalt Institute’s Cobalt Market Report, published, confirmed the long-term role of cobalt as part of the solution to a green energy transition. Indonesia became a key growth market for cobalt, while cobalt-containing batteries maintained strong share in the EV market.

Caroline Braibant, Interim Director General at the Cobalt Institute, said: “The cobalt industry is optimistic the cobalt market will continue to grow in the coming years, driven by the success of cobalt’s use in superalloys and hard metals, and particularly in EVs. Cobalt-containing batteries are key for EVs safety, performance and stability – a factor that will continue to define consumer preferences in Europe and North America.”

Indonesia became the second largest cobalt producer, overtaking established producers including Australia and the Philippines. With 5% of 2022 supply, Indonesia has the potential to increase cobalt production by 10 times by 2030, with new projects being announced on a regular basis. The Democratic Republic of Congo maintained a steady share of 73% of production.

Despite 2022 being a turbulent year for cobalt demand, it maintained an annual growth of 13%, reaching 187 kt. The cobalt market prospects remain robust as cobalt demand is set to double by 2030, growing at a 10% annual rate.

In 2022, the EV sector was the strongest performer, now accounting for 40% of the total cobalt market. Because of its exceptional properties, cobalt is expected to remain a key raw material for the entire battery supply chain, despite discussions on substitution. Cobalt-containing chemistries represented 63% of cathode demand in 2022. They will remain a critical part of the EV sector and are expected to prevail in Europe and North America.

The Cobalt Institute commissioned Benchmark – the leading business intelligence and market analysis agency – to look at the global trends in cobalt consumption, supply and production in 2022. The Cobalt Market Report is the most comprehensive publicly available market overview to date, which provides an in-depth analysis of the trends driving the demand for this unique commodity. The Cobalt Institute publishes this report to make the supply chain data accessible to everyone and to help underpin a broader approach to transparency.

Cobalt Institute | www.cobaltinstitute.org