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What role can junior miners in the DRC play in the expected copper boom?

A recent Goldman Sachs report estimates that EV-related copper demand will amount to 2.4 Mt of copper by 2030 with an additional 153 kt of copper demand coming from charging stations.

“We expect this demand to grow at a rate of 31% a year for the remainder of the decade,” write authors Nicholas Snowdon, Daniel Sharp and Jeffrey Currie.

In addition, the report states that copper demand for solar power is expected to rise from 400 kt this year to 1.6 Mt a year in 2030 and demand for wind turbines is going to triple from 400 kt per year now to 1.3 Mt per year by 2030.

“The shift of the global economy toward net zero emissions remains a core driver of the structural bull market in commodities demand, in which green metals—copper in particular—are critical.”

The authors estimate that ‘green demand’ will grow at an average annual growth rate of 20% in the 2020s, generating just under 500 kt per year of growth in demand volumes.

The good news for the DRC is that the authors are of the opinion that the copper market, as it currently stands, is not prepared for this demand environment.

Have you voted on our poll regarding the future of copper in Africa?

The DRC is home to one of Africa’s most mature mining sectors, with multiple large-scale mines that have been operating for decades. But are there still opportunities to grow this industry further?

The junior sector holds the key to unlocking long-term growth and sustainability across the country and there are ample opportunities for exploration, development and production in both explored and unexplored parts of the country.

We recently hosted a webinar in conjunction with Africa Mining Forum and DRC Mining Week where key points regarding the role junior miners in the country will play in further developing the local economy.

Emerging juniors in the DRC

Discussion points included:

  • The current and future investment climate for DRC-based junior miners.
  • What investment limitations still exist for juniors in the country and how do they overcome these?
  • Which commodities are attracting the most exploration and development funding?
  • How the new Mining Code has affected investor confidence in the DRC.