Copper’s High Conductivity Makes It a Popularly Used Metal in End-Use Industries Globally
Copper is the world's third-most-used metal, and it is also referred to as a highly conductive material. It has good electrical conductivity, excellent thermal conductivity, corrosion resistance, high flexibility, recyclability, and is nonmagnetic. The copper market is divided into end-user industries including automotive and heavy equipment, construction, electrical and electronics, industrial, and other end-user industries.
Because of its properties, copper is used in many applications such as in various electronic applications, including wires and cables, dynamos, transformers, motors, electromagnets, switches, communication cables, residential electrical circuits, and so on. Copper demand has recently increased due to the growth of electric vehicles. Electrical vehicles made of heavy copper use foils, stators, rotors, shaft heads, hollow wires, and motors.
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Due to China's fully advanced construction and power generation sectors and continuous investments in the region for advancements in the telecommunications and electronics sectors over the years, Asia Pacific is expected to dominate the global market. It is the oldest known metal that is still used in construction. Furthermore, copper's material structure, conductivity, damage tolerance, durability, flexibility, and strength make it ideal for almost any construction project. As a result, increased construction activity in Asia-Pacific may boost the region's copper market.
As per China's National Development and Reform Commission, rising housing demand will likely drive residential construction in the public and private sectors. In 2021, the number of new hotel projects in the country was expected to increase by about 19%. The region's market is being driven by an increase in the construction of tall buildings and hotels. China is the world's largest purchaser of electric vehicles. Following the modest growth seen in 2020, China's electric vehicle sales increased by more than 50% in 2021. As a result, it is expected that increased electric vehicle sales in China will fuel the Chinese copper market.
The medical devices market in India has seen an increase in demand, with market size rapidly increasing. In September, the Indian government approved a proposal worth INR 5,000 crore (USD 674.36 million) to build a medical devices park in Himachal Pradesh's industrial township of Nalagarh in the Solan district 2021. Because copper is a critical component in medical devices, rising demand is expected to boost the copper market in India. Such factors are increasing the demand for copper in a variety of industries.
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Glencore announced plans to restart operations at the Mutanda copper and cobalt mine in 2022 in May 2021. Mutanda's restarted operations may help the company alleviate shortages in the copper and cobalt markets, which may limit further price gains. Aurubis AG plans to expand its global recycling of metal-bearing materials in November 2021. It has begun work on a multimetal recycling plant in the US state of Georgia. Circuit boards, copper cable, and other metal-containing recycling materials will be processed into 35,000 tonnes of blister copper per year. Some of the major players include Glencore, BHP, Codelco, Aurubis AG, and KGHM.
Copper is the world's third-most-used metal, and it is also referred to as a highly conductive material. Copper has good electrical conductivity, excellent thermal conductivity, corrosion resistance, high flexibility, recyclability, and is nonmagnetic. The copper market is divided into end-user industries (automotive and heavy equipment, construction, electrical and electronics, industrial, and other end-user industries).