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

6th World Antimony Forum

April 23-24, 2018
Zhangjiajie, China

6th International Refractories & Abrasives Summit

April 19-20, 2018
Beijing, China

Interview with Mr. A.Naumov, Sales Manager, KVAR

Our company has engaged in selling selenium powder as an agent for more than ten years, and we mainly deal with selenium powder from UGMK in Russia; meanwhile, we also trade other minor metals.
Russian selenium price won't drop too much
----Interview with Mr. A.Naumov, Sales Manager, KVAR
Asian Metal: First, thanks for your time to take this interview, and would you please introduce your company briefly?
Naumov: Our company has engaged in selling selenium powder as an agent for more than ten years, and we mainly deal with selenium powder from UGMK in Russia; meanwhile, we also trade other minor metals.I want to tell you that there are in total three selenium powder producers in Russia, with an annual output around 70-80t of selenium powder from Norilsk Nickel, 70t from UGMK, and less than 5t from Kyshtymskiy copper plant, so we can see that the annual output of selenium powder is around 150t in total in Russia, which is only small volume in the international market.
Asian Metal: I think that more than 80% of selenium powder of Russian origin are exported to European market, so I wonder whether bids from European buyers are high, or due to stable purchases .
Naumov: Yes, you are right. There are more than 80% of selenium of Russian origin that are exported to European market, including selenium powder, ingots and granule. As for the buyers, I can say that we have a long and stable supplier relationship.
Asian Metal: China has a huge demand for selenium powder, with a monthly purchasing volumes of around 100t. I heard that there are some Chinese buyers making inquiries to Russian selenium powder suppliers, but most of them can not receive replies, so I wonder if Russian selenium powder suppliers just can not accept the way of payment of Chinese buyers, and where do most Russian suppliers deliver to?
Naumov: Indeed, China has a huge demand for selenium powder, and exerts a prodigious effect on the market. As you said, demand for selenium powder in China one month equals to one-year output of some producers in Russia. We also have ever received some inquiries from Chinese buyers, but most of them just ask for prices, so compared with European buyers, it is easier for us to communicate with European buyers. Moreover, the output of selenium powder in Russia is relatively small, but orders from China are usually big volumes. Location is another important factor. For example, Norilsk Nickel plant is located east of Russia in the arctic, near to Dydinka port, so the optimal choice is to ship the material to Rotterdam port. We sell selenium powder in the same way as it only takes a few days for us to deliver the material to Rotterdam port by trucking. It is the most important thing for us to deliver and receive materials in a short time, especially during the sluggish economic environment.Our buyers are mostly from Germany.and Belgium.
Asian Metal: I want to know how do suppliers consider making a price before signing contracts, and are there some references to consult? How many volumes of materials are purchased for one deal once?
Naumov: We sign contracts mostly based on a formula price, with sales volume around 10-15t once, but Norilsk Nickel can sell 30t of selenium powder once.
Asian Metal: Chinese selenium powder buyers complain the high offers from foreign countries, so what do you think about the current price?
Naumov: Selenium powder price is unlikely to go down considerably, though the economic recession continues as there is less than 0.05 ppm selenium element in the earth crust. Moreover, most electrolytic copper manufacturers are still maintaining low output under the weak economic situation, which means that the raw materials that are used to produce selenium powder also reduced much, so we may face the situation of short supply of raw materials tomorrow. As for our price, we insist in offering at a median price.
Asian Metal: Consumption of selenium powder seems not big in Russia, maybe 50t one year, so which are the main consumer areas?
Naumov: First is glass industries, and then the paint industry, both industries accounting for 90% of the whole consumption area. Besides, the other small parts are used in chemistry and metallurgy industry.
Asian Metal: The exchange rate between Russian ruble and US dollars has depreciated sharply since the economic crisis broke out in the second half of last year, so does it affect selenium powder export market?
Naumov: Yes, we are keeping an eye on the exchange rate. Affected by the exchange rate, we gradually lowered offers in the second half of last year and early this year. We tried the offers based on Russian ruble didn't increased for domestic consumers sigificantly. We are always trying to be season with the market affected by the variational exchange rate. We put the buyers to the top position during the worst period of economic crisis when demand from foreign market is at the bottom.
Asian Metal: Will the government give some support to selenium powder producers? Will there be some different policies on export and domestic trading?
Naumov: The government did not come up with any supportive policies as they are more concerned with the problem of the macro economy, but will give some support to big plants, such as steel, copper and aluminium industries.I think that it is not a bad thing in general. But our government is trying to set up a new type of economic innovation system, which also includes minor metals like selenium, tellurium, gallium and indium, so we need to pay attention on minor metals too.
Asian Metal: The global economy is gradually warming up at present, but demand from consumers remains weak, so when do you think the overall economy may turn around?
Naumov: I am not optimistic about the future market, and worried that the economic recession may last a long time, longer than that in 1973 -1975 and 1981-1982.
Asian Metal: Thanks very much for your time to take this interview.
Naumov: You are welcome.
Asian Metal: See you.
Naumov: Good bye.