As those following the scandium market are aware, there isn’t much to keep an eye on. Globally, the scandium market only amounts to 10 to 15 tonnes of supply and demand each year, and it can be difficult to get hold of prices for the metal.
Still, market watchers such as John Kaiser of Kaiser Research have stated that there is an “enormous latent demand for scandium.” Indeed, Kaiser has noted that though little scandium is currently available, there have been thousands of patents filed regarding uses of scandium, suggesting that end users would happily make use of the metal if they could.
Junior mining companies focus on scandium
This year, a number of junior mining companies took steps toward bringing primary scandium projects forward. That’s key because scandium is mainly produced as a by-product of other metals, such as titanium, uranium and rare earths. Interestingly, all three of these primary scandium projects are located in New South Wales, Australia.
Scandium International Mining (TSX:SCY) signed a memorandum of understanding for an offtake agreement with ALCERECO of Kingston, Ontario in March, and announced in September that it would be initiating a definitive feasibility study for its Nyngan scandium project, expected to be complete in the first quarter of next year.
Clean TeQ Holdings (ASX:CLQ), backed by mining entrepreneur Robert Friedland, has continued to advance its Syerston scandium project, while Platina Resources (ASX:PGM) is moving ahead with its Owendale scandium project — it released the results of a scoping study for the project this past March. Platina is in ongoing negotiations with China’s Inner Mongolia Honfine Zirconium Industry regarding a potential offtake agreement for scandium from Owendale.
Meanwhile, a number of other junior miners have been looking at producing scandium as a by-product. Texas Rare Earth Resources (OTCMKTS:TRER) reported in August that it was looking at producing scandium from its Round Top rare earths project in Texas, while NioCorp Developments (TSXV:NB) added scandium production to this year’s preliminary economic assessment for its Elk Creek niobium project in Nebraska.
Top scandium articles
Overall, it appears that there’s been a growing interest in scandium from junior mining companies, but there haven’t been any changes in global scandium production just yet. Still, investors have been keeping a close watch on scandium market commentary. Here’s a look at some of our most popular articles from this year.
1. Scandium Prices: What You Need to Know
As mentioned, it can be difficult to get definitive insight into scandium prices. That said, there are certainly several aspects of the market that investors should be aware of. For example, a white paper from Scandium International notes that there are different prices for different types and qualities of scandium products. Learn more about scandium prices here.
2. Scandium Production: The Problem and the Opportunity
Our overview of scandium market basics, and why some investors have zeroed in on the metal, was fairly popular among readers this year. Click here for key points to know about the scandium market.
3. John Kaiser: Scandium is Going to Go ‘Ballistic’
In a talk at this past January’s Vancouver Resource Investment Conference, Kaiser explained why he sees plenty of upside potential for scandium, and spoke about several of the scandium projects mentioned above. See the full summary of his thoughts on scandium here.
Securities Disclosure: I, Teresa Matich, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.