Anglo American executive head of marketing for base and special metals Alex Schmitt said, looking ahead, a supply deficit was inevitable.
"Mining is long-term thinking … currently 2 billion people are middle class, in the next decades those should increase to 5 billion, which means this alone requires a lot of additional electricity over the next few years and copper is the best electrical conductor," he said.
Schmitt added that climate change was also an issue to consider, with copper potentially playing a role in decreasing carbon emissions.
He placed copper consumption per capita at an average 3kg/capita and assumed a annual growth rate of 2%. Such growth would require an additional 13 large copper mines over the period to 2030, with 22 new large mines ...