U.S. And China Vie For Copper As Demand And Prices Soar

The world is running short of copper, and companies and countries are scrambling. This essential metal, a staple of civilization going back to the bronze age, is the lifeblood of existing energy infrastructure and cutting-edge technology. Unfortunately, it faces a projected supply shortfall by 2025 with projections showing a 20% price jump by May 2027. Annual demand will surge to 36.6 million metric tons by 2031, up from 25.3 million in 2021.

This vulnerability isn’t merely an economic inconvenience; it’s a geopolitical powder keg. The U.S. finds itself in an increasingly high-stakes scramble for global copper supplies against China. If this competition isn’t managed the same way the competition for crude oil is, competition for copper could further destabilize the already rocky international system.

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