Published on : Nov 17, 2014
The germanium market is highly oligopolistic in nature, with China dominating the global industry in terms of output.
The gap between global availability of germanium deposits and exploitation of these resources is an area that still needs to be addressed in order to ensure optimum utilization. Currently, the amount of recoverable germanium deposits across the globe is roughly over 8,500 metal metric tons (MMT). The U.S. accounts for over 45% of the total recoverable germanium deposits, followed by China with more than 40% of the deposits. However, lack of exploitation activities in the U.S. has caused the region to generate less than 3% of the total germanium output. China, on the other hand, has emerged as a leading regional market in terms of production, accounting for over 57% of the worldwide output.
China exports most of its germanium to the U.S., Japan, and Germany. In 2013, over 62% of China’s total export was accounted for by the U.S.
The key end users of germanium include electronics/solar applications, fiber optic systems, infrared optics, polymerization catalysts, and others such as metallurgy, phosphors, and chemotherapy.
Some of the leading players operating in the germanium market are Voltaix, LLC, Umicore SA, Chemical and Technical Developments Ltd, Photonic Sense GmbH, Novotech, Inc., PPM Pure Metals GmbH, Indium Corporation, Yunnan Lincang Xinyuan Germanium Industry Co., Ltd., Umicore Electro-Optic Materials, GFI Advanced Technologies Inc., Teck Resources Limited, Japan Algae Co., and Ltd Yunnan Chihong Zinc and Germanium Co., Ltd.
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