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Global molybdenum usage rises, while production falls in 2022


Global production of molybdenum was at 577.8 million pounds in 2022, a fall of 1% from 581.4 million pounds in 2021, figures released by the International Molybdenum Association (IMOA) show. Global usage rose 3% to 631.5 million pounds from 614.3 million pounds the previous year.

China remained the largest producer of molybdenum at 248.6 million pounds, up 12% from 222.3 million pounds in 2021. South America remained the second largest producer but saw an 8% drop in production to 166.7 million pounds, from 181.3 million pounds the previous year. North America saw the largest fall in production, 13%, to 112.1 million pounds from 128.6 million pounds the previous year. Other regions saw a 2% rise in production to 50.4 million pounds from 49.2 million pounds in 2021.

Global production in Q4 2022 saw a 7% increase to 152 million pounds when compared to Q3 2022, with a rise of 4% in China, 14% in South America and 11% in North America, while Other regions saw a fall of 8%. When compared to the same quarter of the previous year (Q4, 2021), there was a 6% rise in production. South America was the only region to see a fall, 1%, in production when compared to the same quarter as the previous year, while China saw a 12% increase, South America a 5% increase and Other regions a 1% increase.

China remained the largest user of molybdenum, 268.9 million pounds, in 2022 and saw the largest rise, up 9% from 245.6 million pounds in 2021. Europe remained the second largest user of molybdenum at 124.2 million pounds, down 4% from 129.9 in 2021. Other regions saw a rise in usage of 5% to 105.7 million pounds from 100.6 in 2021. The USA, the fourth largest user, saw a 2% rise in usage to 61.3 million pounds from 59.9 million pounds in 2021. Japan saw a 3% decrease in usage to 50.9 million pounds from 52.6 million pounds in 2021. CIS saw the largest decrease in usage, 20%, 20.5 million pounds from 25.7 million pounds in 2021.

In Q4 global usage fell 2% to 157.4 million pounds when compared to Q3 2022, with a fall of 2% in Japan and 18% in Other regions.  Europe saw the largest percentage increase, 6%, when compared to the previous quarter, while China saw a 2% rise. Usage in the USA and CIS remained the same in Q4 as the previous quarter.  When compared to the same quarter of the previous year (Q4 2021) global usage increase 11%, with a rise of 27% in China, 8% in Europe, 4% in USA, and 5% in Other regions. CIS saw the largest percentage fall of 31% when compared to the same quarter of the previous year (Q4 2021), while Japan saw a 7% fall.

General information for media

IMOA is a non profit trade association, representing the majority of the molybdenum industry worldwide. It works to raise awareness about the unique properties of molybdenum, its beneficial effects on materials performance, its safety in use and its contribution to sustainable development.

Molybdenum is added to alloy steels to improve strength, toughness, hardenability and weldability for numerous applications in the automotive, shipbuilding, construction, mining, chemical, oil & gas and energy generation industries. In stainless steels and superalloys, it improves corrosion resistance and high-temperature performance and finds uses in many industrial applications. It is also used in a variety of products from catalysts and lubricants to pigments and paint.

IMOA has a strict antitrust compliance policy which delegates of all meetings are required to observe. All such meetings are observed by legal counsel.

For more information please email the communications team at media@imoa.info.
For up-to-date information please follow IMOA on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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