Global Zirconium Market to Experience 7% CAGR through 2020
The global zirconium market had a total value of $4 billion as of 2014, according to a recent report available from Research and Markets. The market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7% during the forecast period.
The dominant economic source of zirconium is the zirconium silicate mineral, zircon (ZrSiO4), which is found mainly in deposits located in Australia, South Africa and India. About 42% of global zirconium production is in Australia, followed by 25% in South Africa and 10% in China. Global zirconium production was 1.44 million tons in 2013. The $1 billion Dubbo Zirconia Project (DZP) is one of Australia’s most valuable rare metal/rare earth project. With an estimated mine life of 70+ years, the DZP will be the next big project to hit the global market in the near future. Areas with major production activity include South Australia, Western Australia and New South Wales (Eucla Basin, Narngulu, Murray Basin, Perth Basin and Tiwi Islands). Hainan province is the principle zirconium production region in China.
Environmental concerns over automotive exhaust gases have forced manufacturers to use catalytic converters in their vehicle models. Over 95% of all new vehicles sold each year are now fitted with catalytic converters. The main influence on the zirconium metal market is the nuclear industry, accounting for around 60% of zirconium sponge capacity. Zirconium alloys are also used in the manufacture of fuel tubes, cladding and other components.
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