China’s secondary lead consumption is likely to exceed primary lead consumption in the future as recycling resources gains importance, said by Gao Fue, director of renewable resources at Henan Yuguang Gold & Lead Group.
The consumption ratio of secondary and primary lead is expected to be 7:4, from the current ratio of 1:2. But primary lead is unlikely to be completely replaced, even as secondary resources gains market share.
Affected by environmental concerns, technical requirements and limited resource reserves, output of primary lead ore mining is shrinking in China. Lead ore resources are poor in China, with most ore reserves containing lower grade ores. There are also few, large reserves in China. Reserves are estimated to deplete after four years.
Large miners with advanced environmental protection facilities arelikely to dominate the mining industry. Gao believes that two new models will emerge in the lead industry. One is an integrated primary lead production model that uses both primary and recycled materials while the second is a model to produce batteries and secondary lead.