For now, capacity will officially grow to 150,000 tpy by 2020, from an expected output of 110,000 tpy in 2019, Parreira added. The company announced on January 7 it would be investing $200 million for that end.
“Sales volumes grew by 26% last year and should be up by more than 10% in 2019,” the executive said. “If these rates are maintained going forward, our new capacity will turn out to be insufficient.”
CBMM estimates ferro-niobium sales will total 92,000-95,000 tonnes in 2019, compared with around 83,000 tonnes last year. Special products’ sales are forecast to reach 5,000 tonnes of equivalent ferro-niobium, up from 4,500 tonnes in 2018.
“As the new capacity proves not to be enough to supply all of the niobium market, we are already discussing if another expansion is necessary and will decide on that throughout 2020,” Parreira said. “The increase could boost...