Global lead and zinc markets continued to be in deficit in May as well with lead demand outpacing supply by 210,000mt and zinc with 83,000mt from January-May 2021, according to the World Bureau of Metal Statistics (WBMS).
The current surplus for both metals compares to 123,000mt for lead and 610,000mt in zinc markets at the end of 2020.
Lead production trends up
Global production of refined lead inched up 14.5pc during January-April 2021 to 5.8mn mt, against the same timeframe last year. Meanwhile, output and demand in May stood at 1.17mn mt and 1.3mn mt, respectively, WBMS noted.
Apparent demand in China comprised 49pc of the global total and was estimated to be 2.9mn mt, during this period, translating to a 703,000mt increase from January-May 2020.
Similarly, the US’ apparent demand rose by 79,000mt in the same period this year compared with the previous year.
Global demand for zinc climbs
Demand for refined zinc in the first five months of 2021 grew by 16pc or 814,000mt compared to the same time last year. Production was also up 5.2pc from 2020. Slab zinc output and demand were 1.16mn mt and 1.2mn mt, respectively, in April.
Japan’s apparent demand was 37pc higher at 235,500mt in January-April 2021 than the same period of 2020. Apparent demand in China stood at 2.93mn mt representing 49pc of the world’s total during the same period under review.