Lead byproducts may not be Chinese smelters' silver lining: 2022 preview

While primary lead smelters in China are keeping their hopes high on generating more profits from the recovery of byproducts amid losses in the smelting of the base metal, some are skeptical about whether this would be enough of a lifebuoy for them to keep their heads above water in 2022.

Lead smelters have been navigating rough waters in 2021, and they do not have a lot of optimism for next year.
“A major Asian lead smelter that also produces bulk amounts of silver is now planning to extend its maintenance period for next year because they expect low lead-processing charges,” a lead producer source said.
White silver, minor metals such as antimony and bismuth, as well as sulfuric acid are common byproducts of lead smelting.

This year, the sale of byproducts has greatly offset the losses that lead smelters incurred in the smelting of the base metals alone, which emerged as a combination of low lead concentrate treatment charges, high...


Julian Luk

Yiwen Ju

December 31, 2021

16:16 GMT

London, Shanghai