The price of copper reached a new historical maximum on May 10, 2021, exceeding the value of a decade ago, in 2011 (see graphic in the image)
Coincidentally, that year 2011 was the year of constitution of im3 in Chile, the world’s number one country in copper production, with 5.7 million metric tons in 2020, followed by Peru (with strong growth in recent years) and China, with a total of 2.2 and 1.7 million tons respectively (see graph)
Copper is a key metal for the development of ‘green tech’ (green technology) due to its flexibility, electrical and thermal conductivities and cost-efficiency:
- An electric vehicle needs between 4 and 5 times more copper than an internal combustion vehicle.
- Copper is used in electric vehicle charging stations, solar panels and wind turbines.
Currently, 3% of copper is destined for ‘green tech’, but it is estimated that in 2030 the ‘green’ demand for copper will reach a value close to the annual production of the red metal in Chile, around 6 million tons metrics.