Increased production may not be enough to offset future demand and there is still likely to be a supply gap in the second half of this decade as companies struggle to move projects to production quickly enough. It takes on average 15-20 years to move a project from discovery through to production – and with only 16 discoveries made in the past decade, there is real concern around demand being met. Of all those 16 discoveries, it’s no guarantee they will all make it to the production stage because of several factors, ranging from low grades to complex logistics or geographical location to potential regulatory obstacles.
The thirst for more and more electrical vehicles is not going to go away and only time will tell how successful the mining industry will cope for more copper demand bearing in mind Marimaca Copper in Chile has made the only significant copper discovery in the world since 2015 and is attempting to move into the construction phase this year following the. permitting process.