Platinum market set for supply/demand balance in 2018: WPIC

London (Mar 15)  Platinum production was on the rise in 2017, but the market is on track to be balanced this year, as supply declines and demand picks up pace, the World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC) said in its latest report.

Last year, platinum production increased by 1% while global demand fell 7% year-on-year, leaving the market with a 250,000-ounce surplus. However, the market is expected to return to equilibrium this year, with an estimated small surplus of 25,000 ounces.

Global platinum supply is forecast to be 7,815,000 ounce in 2018, a decline of 2% from 2017, despite an anticipated increase in recycling of 60000 ounce to 1,965000 ounce.

Total mining supply for 2018 is expected to decline by 4% to 5,850,000 ounce, mostly owing to reduced output from South Africa following some mine closures in 2017 and lower production in Russia.

Global demand is projected to grow marginally in 2018 to 7,790,000 ounces, as a recovery in industrial demand and an increase in jewellery demand outweigh a decline in automotive demand and slightly lower investment demand.

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