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“If cobalt falls into the hands of the Chinese, yeah you won’t see EVs being produced in Europe etc. They are waking up too late ... I think it’s because the car industry has never had a supply chain problem before,” Glasenberg told the FT Commodities Global Summit last week in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Glasenberg said he was nevertheless prepared to sell cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo to China if the price was good. He added that the company was not changing its production plans in the DRC.
More than 60 percent of global cobalt production comes from the DRC. Glencore, the world’s biggest producer, agreed this month to sell a third of its output to China’s GEM.
GEM and its subsidiaries will buy 13,800 tonnes of cobalt from Glencore this year, 18,000 tonnes next year and 21,000 tonnes in 2020.
The Swiss-based miner is expected to produce about 39,000 tonnes this year or about 35 percent of the global total, estimated at 110,000 tonnes by analysts.
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