Global production of molybdenum increased to 144.3 million pounds in Q2 2017, up 13% from 127.8 million pounds recorded in the previous quarter, and an increase of 18% when compared with the same period last year (2016). Global use of molybdenum in Q2 2017 also increased slightly, up 1% to 136.3 million pounds, an increase of 7% compared with the same period in 2016, according to figures released today by the International Molybdenum Association (IMOA).
South America overtook China to become the biggest molybdenum producer, with 53.2 million pounds in Q2 2017, up 23% from both Q1 and the same period in 2016. Production in China also increased to 51.8 million pounds, up 14% from Q1 and up 16% when compared to the same period in 2016. Production in North America was fractionally higher at 30.3 million pounds in the second quarter, an increase of 1% from the previous quarter, and an increase of 19% compared with the same quarter in 2016.
China remained the biggest user, at 45.2 million pounds in the second quarter of 2017, down 2% from 46.3 million pounds in Q2 2017 and also down 2% when compared to the same period in 2016. Europe was the second largest user at 36.8 million pounds, up 2% from 36.1 million pounds in Q1, and up by 12% compared to the same period in 2016.
Usage in the USA was 14.8 million pounds, up 7% from 13.8 million pounds inQ1, and up 12% compared to the same quarter in 2016, while usage in Japan fell just 1% to 12.8 million pounds, although this was still 11% more than in the same period in 2016. Usage in the CIS countries increased 5% to 4.9 million pounds, while usage in other countries also increased by 5% to 21.8 million pounds.