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Agenda Overview

Sunday 8th November

12:30    Registration desk opens

18:00    Opening drinks reception


Day 1 Monday 9th November

Plenary session

10:00 Welcome to the new: Introducing South32

  • Spun off to better tackle the challenges of the global manganese markets – a few remarks on strategy with these non-core assets now become core
  • South32’s opinion on the future of manganese alloys in South Africa as well as Asia; joint possibilities or mutually exclusive beneficiation locations?
  • What will South32’s entrance into the ferroalloys space mean for the industry at large?

Erwin Schaufler, General Manager Marketing, South32, Singapore

10:30 Developments in the European macro-economy and impact on demand for steel and alloys

  • Recent macroeconomic developments in Europe
  • Growth of steel-intensive sectors relative to other parts of the economy
  • Relationship between GDP, industrial production and steel consumption
  • Assessment of situation in the main EU countries with individual breakdown
  • European trade balance in steel and ferroalloy
  • European ferroalloy supply/demand outlook

Kevin Fowkes, Managing Consultant, AlloyConsult, UK

11:00 Networking refreshment break

11:45 Substitution trends in the stainless steel industry - Implications for ferroalloys

  • 10 years after the stainless steel industry has introduced 'The Ferritic Solution' initiative, some predicted and surprising changes have happened with regards to the grade structure in the industry
  • Changing customer demands and regional preferences have re-shaped the specifications and steel types used
  • How has this fundamentally changed the market dynamics for nickel, chromium, molybdenum and niobium?
  • How predicting the next 10 years from the previous decade will lead to false results – provision of an outlook for the next 10 years

Markus Moll, Managing Director, SMR, Austria

12:15 Operational and market updates on vanadium from Largo Resources

  • The long road to where you are now – overview of developments and what you expect ahead
  • View from the ground – operational update from Maracas in Brazil
  • How do you see the vanadium markets moving forward?  When will we see a recovery in prices?

Mark Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer, Largo Resources, Brazil

12:45 Networking lunch

I: Manganese stream

14:15 One of the important developments in Sarawak: OM Holdings

  • Status updates regarding both manganese alloys and ferrosilicon production
  • What is the targeted full capacity and what are the furnaces currently running at?
  • OM Holding’s view of the markets in China and the future role of Mn alloy smelting in Asia

Ngee Tong Low, Executive Chairman, OM Holdings, Singapore

14:45 Mining and processing in Western Africa: EMM prospects and potential

  • A major’s new operation in the region: how smoothly is production coming along?
  • Overview of the plant’s design with considerations for environmental restraints
  • Marketing the material: what are the markets and the implications for sale?

Arnaud Tissidre, Vice President Commercial – Ores and Alloys, Eramet Comilog, France

15:15 Refreshment break

15:45 Manganese market overview: how have we faired in 2015 so far?

  • An overview of supply and demand fundamentals in 2015
  • Updates on average real unit consumption globally of Mn products in today’s steelmaking environment
  • Projected market balance going forward and which projects will be offsetting the status quo
  • Latest news from the IMnI and other global issues

Aloys d’Harambure, Market Research Manager, International Manganese Institute, France

16:15 Annual global manganese panel discussion: prices, ores and alloys

  • The future of the smelting industry in South Africa and Asia – the squeeze seems to be getting tighter for Mn alloys in RSA
  • How long will the prolonged oversupply in the manganese ore markets continue to put downward pressure on prices?
  • This said, when can we expect prices to recover due both to a better market equilibrium and better market conditions, ie demand?
  • Where are the market participants hopeful about seeing an uptick in demand?  India and elsewhere?
  • Overview and discussion of the main logistic difficulties in South Africa
  • Discussion of price discrepancies and disconnects between manganese ore and alloy products

Anne Tremblay, Executive Director, International Manganese Institute, France
Simon Collins, Head of Business Development, South32, Australia
Arnaud Tissidre, Vice President Commercial – Ores and Alloys, Eramet Comilog, France
Esteban Rivero, Commercial and Energy Director, Compania Minera Autlan, Mexico
Gueorgui Pirinski, Analyst - Carbon Steel Materials, Noble Group, Singapore

II: Silicon stream

14:00 Recent developments in global silicon and ferrosilicon markets

  • Why have prices outperformed other related alloys?
  • Development of production costs
  • The impact of the Brazilian electricity shortage, industry consolidation and new projects
  • Contrasting outlook across the different consuming sectors

Kevin Fowkes, Managing Consultant, AlloyConsult, UK

14:30 Eventual silicon smelter in the Middle East – What is the probability?
  • What are the key prerequisites for a new Silicon factory in the Middle East?
  • What does Turkey bring to the table in terms of competitive advantage?
  • How does the other regional projects compare to a hypothetical Turkish Silicon smelter?
  • How would Silicon production in Turkey impact the viability of other regional projects?

Louis Charles Parous, Executive Director, Viridis.IQ, Germany

14:50 Off-gas system modelling based on thermodynamics
Valdiney Domingos, Director of Process Intelligence, Viridis.IQ, Germany

15:10 US steel industry and the major trends in ferrosilicon

Amy Bennett
, Principal Consultant, Metal Bulletin Research, USA

15:40    Networking coffee break

16:10 Silicor Materials in Iceland: Metals on the power island

  • Progress report on the silicon purification project in Iceland
  • Solar remains the targeted market for the Si product but will the plant eventually feed into other end user markets?
  • specifications of te project upon completion as well as strategic position vis-à-vis local industry and location

John Beaver, CFO, SIlicor Materials, Iceland

16:40 The silicon panel: Raw materials, energy and their influence

  • What is the consensus regarding where the future of the upstream industry will be centralised?
  • Where are projects rumoured to be springing up in the near term, in addition to the handful of projects announced in the past 12 months?
  • With each respective region, what will the main challenges be?; for example: duration of power supply contracts, raw material quality or availability and carbon footprint from new plants
  • Viability of solar industry in select Middle Eastern countries; Saudi Arabia, UAE
  • Which projects demonstrate promise?  What are the issues hindering the emergence of more or plaguing current projects?
  • What could the demand for polysilicon for the solar industry be like over the next decade in regions such as the Middle East?

Louis Charles Parous, Executive Director, Viridis.IQ, Germany
Kevin Fowkes, Managing Consultant, AlloyConsult, UK
Amy Bennett, Principal Consultant, Metal Bulletin Research, USA
John Beaver, CFO, Silicor Materials, Iceland
Rikardur Rikardsson, Business Director, Landsvirkjun, Iceland
Kari Maris Gudmundsson, Global Sales Manager Ferrosilicon, Elkem, Iceland

17:30 End of day one


Day 2 Tuesday 10th November

III: Chrome stream

10:15 The survival imperative: High-grade ore and the market’s needs

  • How should Turkish chrome ore producers mount an offensive to remain relevant to Chinese ferrochrome producers?
  • Should we expect this decline in consumption of Turkish ore as a more permanent trend or as a result of sluggish commodity prices?
  • Where does this leave the possibility for further beneficiated products within countries like Turkey?

Cengiz Onal, International Marketing Director, Yildirim Group, Turkey

10:45 Global picture of supply and demand for FeCr products

  • Production levels and growth potential for Kazakhstan, India, China and South Africa
  • Different grades and different applications; how do the product complexities define their use?
  • Pricing trends; indexes, tenders and the strive towards a transparent picture

Dmitry Pastour, Director Ferroalloys, ERG Sales AG, Switzerland

11:00 Annual global panel discussion: Chrome sweet chrome and consolidation

  • Ores around the orb: pressure on prices and making margins difficult; Turkey vs. Kazakhstan vs. Southern Africa
  • Weakness in the downstream industry: but will stainless production pick up in China in the next few quarters?
  • The rehashed questions, year in year out: when does consolidation finally come in South Africa? 
  • Have we witnessed or are we now witnessing the beginning of this consolidation with the likes of Tata Steel KZN entering business rescue?
  • How sustainable is the South African smelting industry under current market conditions, at current prices and at this level of fragmentation?
  • What might become of the Chinese FeCr industry?
  • How is high-carbon FeCr faring the current market conditions?  And the demand from the foundry industry directly linked to this?
  • Taiwanese and Chinese stainless dumping: the larger global reverberations
  • The lucrative potential of UG2

Robert Yüksel Yildirim, President & Chief Executive Officer, Yildirim Group, Turkey
Mauri Kauppi, Vice President – Sales & Marketing, Outokumpu Chrome, Finland
Danko Konchar, Chief Executive Officer, Afarak Group, Finland
Dmitry Pastour, Director Ferroalloys, ERG Sales AG, Switzerland


IV: Nickel stream

10:15 Stainless scrap demand for India - A force or farce?

Anil Shah
, President, Ni-Met Metals Inc., Canada

10:45 A forecast of nickel prices given ban, destocking and more

  • Could the statement be justified that nickel prices could have been overwhelmingly overestimated in recent year?
  • Can we really imagine a recovery to the mid-20,000s any time soon given the current slump and global consumption slowdown of commodities?
  • Underlying factors impacting nickel prices, both nickel specific as well as systematic factors

Mark Selby, Chief Executive Officer, Royal Nickel, Canada

11:15 A nickel for your thoughts: prices, stocks, ores, alloys and the citadel of stainless
  • What are the growth prospects for ferronickel in the grandeur of Chinese stainless steel making, given that domestic NPI production appears to be shrinking?
  • When will the rally in nickel prices, which the majority of the market has been predicting for some time now, materialize?
  • Future of stainless series products and substitution trends; 400s for 300s?
  • Future of ferronickel smelting in power-crisis-stricken Brazil – is there a brighter light at the end of the tunnel?
  • Anticipated nickel product imports into China now that destocking is well underway and winding down to naught
Krisztina Kalman-Schueler, Managing Partner, DMM Advisory Group, UK
Dmitry Kuznetsov, Chief Analyst, Norilsk, Russia
Mark Selby, Chief Executive Officer, Royal Nickel, Canada
Anil Shah, President, Ni-Met Metals Inc., Canada
Sebastian Kreft, Head of Nickel Sales, Anglo American, UK
Stephen Portnoi, Head of Sales and Marketing, Cunico, UAE

12:15 End of conference

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