Demand and Pricing
Tungsten is typically priced according to metric ton units (mtu) of Ammonium Paratungstate (APT), which is equal to 10 kg. 1 MTU of APT contains approximately 7.93kgs of tungsten. APT and concentrate prices are mainly based on quotations published twice weekly by London’s metal bulletin and other trade journals (ITIA).
World Supply of Tungsten is dominated by China and Chinese exports. Increase government regulation and restrictions on exports by China in order to meet increasing domestic demand has caused China to become a net importer of tungsten concentrate. Global demand for Tungsten has also largely recovered from the relatively low levels seen in 2009 resulting in tightening supplies and increased pricing which has continued into 2013. Forecast demand growth (3-7% per annum according to the British Geological Survey) is forecast to outstrip available supply and thus place continued upward pressure on prices in the near-term.
Western world supply is tightly constrained and future production is limited to a small number of projects that have been delayed or put on hold due to technical or financing issues.
Recent consolidation in the industry has also limited the amount of tungsten concentrate available for sale with most future production locked into off-take agreements with end users.