12th Rare Earth Summit

May 27-28, 2021
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

11th Aluminum Raw Materials Summit

May 20-21, 2021
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

9th Magnesium Summit

April 15-16, 2021
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

13th World InBiGeGa Forum

March 25-26, 2021
Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China

7th World Antimony Forum

June 13-14, 2019
Changsha, Hunan, China

7th Refractory & Abrasive Materials Summit 2019

May 23-24, 2019
Qingdao, Shandong, China

10th Aluminum Raw Materials Summit

May 16-17, 2019
Zhengzhou, Henan, China

11th Rare Earth Summit

May 9-10, 2019
Qingdao, Shandong, China

8th Magnesium Summit

April 11-12, 2019
Zhuhai, Guangdong, China

12th World InBiGeGa Forum

March 14-15, 2019
Zhuhai, Guangdong, China

6th World Manganese & Selenium Forum

May 21-22, 2018
Hainan Sanya, China
Prices of calcium silicon hover at low level in H1 2020
----Interview with Zhang Ruipeng
General sales manager
Ke Tong New material Tech Co., Ltd.
As one of the major producers in China engaging in calcium silicon and other special alloys production in 2004, Ke Tong New Material Tech Co., Ltd has good reputation both in domestic and international market for reliable quality of CaSi, and its annual producing capacity could reach 42,000t,ranking in the top tier suppliers in the world. They were awarded the national invention patent for the "mixed production method of calcium silicon with large sized furnace" in 2010, and currently they are authorized to use four patents and have three staffs with PHD working in their company.

Asian Metal: Thank you for joining our interview, Mr. Zhang, and please briefly introduce your company.

Mr. Zhang: Ningxia Ke Tong new material is a producing and trading company of calcium silicon alloys which was established 15 years ago. We have three furnaces of 30,000kva to produce 3,600t of calcium silicon monthly with all of them running now. Our export business accounts for half of our business. We also export inoculants which accounts for around 15% of our whole business. According to our clients' inspection results, our calcium purity could reach 31%min and silicon purity could reach 61%min.

Asian Metal: What's the current production cost for calcium silicon 30-60?

Mr. Zhang: For producing calcium silicon, we use semi coke, soft coal, CaCO3, electrode paste and power. The power cost accounts for about 60% of the overall cost. We currently sell CaSi 30-60 at RMB9,400-9,600/t (USD1,367-1,396/t) EXW D/A (late December), and the profit is around RMB300-400/t (USD43-57/t) now.

Asian Metal: Are there any technical barriers in producing calcium silicon as you're using the very common raw materials?

Mr. Zhang: Even though some companies tried to produce calcium silicon with their advantages of the lower cost of raw material, it's difficult for them to control the temperature, and raw material ratio without accumulated producing experiences, leading to frequently sudden short circuit.

How about the local and overseas demand performances in 2019 of your company?

Mr. Zhang: The overall demand slipped in 2019, especially from the second half of 2019.  Upon the shrinking demand from local steel mills, our monthly sales volume in domestic market decreased by 20-30% YOY since the second half of 2019. And synchronously, overseas demands from core wire plants decreased as well for about 30-40%. Taking December for example, we accepted orders about 1,200t from local market and 1,000t from overseas market.

Asian Metal: There are some calcium silicon plants in South America, and how do you compare the pros and cons between the South American and Chinese calcium silicon?

Mr. Zhang: Firstly, Brazilian producers are using wood carbon to smelt calcium silicon, and the aluminum purity is between 0.6-0.8%max. While Chinese producers use semi coke to produce calcium silicon with 1.5%max of aluminum purity. The aluminum purity of the products from Ke Tong could be controlled as low as 1.0%max with the same purity for other elements as Brazilian calcium silicon. Secondly, they're using water to generate power, and the electricity cost is much lower than Chinese power cost. But there are only three producers in South America, and their producing capacity in total is smaller than Chinese capacity. The whole annual capacity for five Chinese producers could reach 100,000-120,000t. Thirdly, it takes as long as six years for the Brazilian producers to do regular furnaces maintenances, while, Chinese producers need to do overhauls within 2 years.

Asian Metal: what's your predication of calcium silicon price trend in 2020?

Mr. Zhang: Due to the sluggish demand from steel mills and foundries, the current price touched the lowest point in the past two years. It's oversupplied in China upon high operation rate, and we believe the price will keep hovering at the current level till May

Asian Metal: What's the direction for your company's further development in 2020?

Mr. Zhang: We will continue to expand our market shares internationally and domestically, and enlarge our nodular business in 2020, improving our competitiveness by diversifying products.

Asian Metal: Thank you for your time, and best wishes for Ke Tong.

Mr. Zhang: Best wishes for Asian Metal!