Cobalt is a metal that has been gaining a lot of attention in the past year; it is now valued at over 80,000 USD per tonne (February 2, 2018). Currently, 100,000 tonnes of cobalt are produced annually, and forecasts suggest an increase in demand. Cobalt is mainly produced as a byproduct of copper and nickel mining, which means growth and development of cobalt relies on the demand of those metals. Vale has made a deal with the Bank of Montreal (Canada) to raise $500M from bidders for future cobalt production at Vale’s mine in Voisey Bay, Labrador. The upfront payment in exchange for future production is known as a streaming deal, which is fairly common in the market of precious metals. This will be the first streaming deal for cobalt, obtaining cobalt from the underground nickel mine for as long as it’s projected life expectancy of 2035.
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