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有关锂的炒作合理吗 Lithium: is the hype justified

文章出处:欧宝官网app 人气:发表时间:2022-01-08 23:12
本文摘要:After two years of unrelenting gloom it is good to see that at least one part of the global energy business is booming. The price of lithium carbonate in China has risen by 253 per cent in the past year and there is intense takeover activi


After two years of unrelenting gloom it is good to see that at least one part of the global energy business is booming. The price of lithium carbonate in China has risen by 253 per cent in the past year and there is intense takeover activity among the limited number of companies that control lithium production. Goldman Sachs has called lithium “the new gasoline”. Is the hype justified? 在被阴霾无情弥漫两年后,能看见全球能源业最少有一部分开始蓬勃发展实属好事。过去一年,中国碳酸锂价格上涨了253%,同时受限几家掌控锂盐生产的企业之间进行了密集的并购活动。高盛(Goldman Sachs)把锂称作“新的汽油”。这种抹黑有道理吗? Lithium is a soft white metal that provides a small but for the moment essential element in battery technology. Production comes from mineral rock or from salt water, with supplies concentrated in Argentina, Australia, China, Chile and the US state of Nevada. That production is controlled by a very small number of companies, led by Albemarle, FMC and Chile’s Sociedad Quimica y Minera (SQM) in Chile. Between them they produced 90 per cent of total supplies outside China last year. 锂是一种软质的白色金属,是电池技术中一种含量很少但目前不可或缺的要素。

锂盐出有原产矿石或咸水,储量集中于在阿根廷、澳大利亚、中国、智利和美国内华达州。锂盐生产由极少数公司掌控,其中以Albemarle、FMC以及智利的Sociedad Quimicay Minera(SQM)公司派。

去年,它们生产了中国以外90%的锂供应量。Recently Citic, the Chinese company, has been showing a very strong interest in SQM — as well as buying the leading electric vehicle manufacturer in Hong Kong. 近来,中国企业中信(Citic)在并购香港领先电动汽车制造商的同时,对SQM展现出出有了十分浓烈的兴趣。

Lithium-based batteries typically store three times more energy, and have a higher energy density to weight ratio, than any existing alternative. This makes them attractive for a range of products, including mobile phones and computers, but also for the larger batteries used to power vehicles. The volumes of lithium involved are small, and output from the top five producing countries in 2014 amounted only to 35,000 tonnes. So, in terms of scale, lithium is hardly the new petrol. Goldman Sachs would be more credible if it cut out the marketing hype. 一般来说锂电池的储电量是现有可替代品的4倍,同时它的能量密度与重量之比更高。这使得锂电池不仅对手机、电脑等一系列产品极具吸引力,还沦为驱动汽车所需的大型电池的适合自由选择。目前锂的产量和使用量很少,2014年五大生产国的锂产量仅有为3.5万吨。

因此,就规模而言,锂很难说是新型汽油。如果高盛删去这句营销抹黑,它的话不会更为可靠。The increase in the lithium price is explained by a surge in demand driven by the growth in the number of electric vehicles. For as long as I can remember electric vehicles have been about to break through and to take a significant share of the world market for light vehicles. The reality has repeatedly lagged behind expectations. Despite many attempts — remember bankrupted American-Israeli start-up Better Place? — and much public policy support there were only 665,000 electric vehicles in operation at the end of 2014, according to a recent authoritative study by the International Energy Agency. In almost every country expansion has been limited by the costs of the vehicles and by the limitations of recharging facilities. 锂金属价格上涨的原因在于电动汽车数量快速增长推展市场需求下跌。

在我记忆中,电动汽车仍然正处于将要突破、并即将在全球轻型汽车市场中占有最重要份额的阶段。然而,现实仍然追不上预期。尽管有过很多尝试——还忘记早已倒闭的美国-以色列初创企业Better Place吗?——还实施了很多公共政策扶植,但根据国际能源署(IEA)近期发布的权威调查表明,截至2014年底电动车保有量仅有为66.5万辆。

完全在所有国家,电动汽车的普及都受到成本和设施电池设施的容许。But the market is changing. According to the latest reports, there have been almost400,000 orders of the new Tesla model, at a cost of $35,000 each. After a long period during which China failed to establish a significant electric vehicle market, sales rose fourfold in 2015 to over 300,000. The problems and the prospects are described in an interesting new study from McKinsey. China’s ambition in this area appears to be significantly increased and the country’s official 12th five-year plan sets a target of 5m electric vehicles on the road by 2020. 但是,该市场于是以再次发生转变。据近期报导称之为,特斯拉(Tesla)新款车型(价格为3.5万美元)的订单量已超过近40万。中国在希望了很久却仍然没能创建相当可观的电动汽车市场后,2015年电动汽车销量快速增长了3倍,超过30万辆以上。

麦肯锡(McKinsey)在其一份有意思的新研究中叙述了该市场的问题和前景。中国在该领域的雄心或许显著增大,其官方十二五计划制订了在2020年电动汽车保有量超过500万辆的目标。In terms of the overall car market this is still fractional. At the end of 2014 electric vehicles accounted for just 0.02 per cent of the global total. Total global car sales in 2015 amounted to 74m — the overwhelming majority using internal combustion engines. On most measures electric vehicles are still not competitive, even with high levels of fiscal subsidy in place. A big change in costs, or mandatory regulation, is needed if they are really going to penetrate the market. 比较整体汽车市场,这依然微不足道。2014年底,电动汽车占到全球汽车总量的比例仅有为0.02%。


This is the context in which to judge the hype around lithium. The price of lithium will rise as demand for electric vehicles and the batteries that power them increases. But there is a limit. We do not yet know how much extra lithium can be produced. The competition for known existing resources suggests there are serious constraints. If that is so lithium will become more expensive to the point at which its cost becomes a barrier and a constraint on electric vehicle sales. That in turn can only hasten the process of substitution — the development of materials that can displace lithium in batteries. Markets always have ceilings set by the ability and willingness of consumers to pay what is being asked, and by ever advancing technology. Petrol is a prime example of a product that keeps selling in vast quantities because it is readily available and its price is not too high. 这是辨别有关锂的抹黑否合理的大环境。随着市场对电动汽车及其电池的市场需求减少,锂的价格将不会下跌。但这是有限度的。



At the moment lithium is one of the very few commodities for which there is an increase in price. The existing owners are no doubt dining out on the increased economic rents they are collecting. They should enjoy the good times while they last. 眼下,锂是少数几种价格上涨的大宗商品之一。现在享有锂资源的企业毫无疑问于是以享用着日益上升的经济租金。