Currently >90% of the European Magnesium demand is produced in China. With this high dependency on China and increasing demand the EU has identified magnesium as a critical raw material. In the meanwhile, the US protects domestic magnesium production by applying 150% import tax on Chinese Magnesium. The most common production process in China is the Pidgeon process, a very energy intensive process with high CO2 emissions but low CAPEX (investments).
Probably from 2026, the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) is a proposed carbon tariff on carbon intensive products, imported by the European Union. The CBAM will increase the cost of energy-intensive produced Magnesium from China significantly.
An option to reduce the CO2 emissions in the magnesium production, is the aluminothermic process facilitated in Europe. This process requires less energy but higher CAPEX. Therefore, our client Verde Magnesium is planning to establish a green-energy production in Romania. Due to the short distance supply chain to the final customer, logistic risks and CO2 emissions can be minimized additionally.
POLARIXPARTNER did a detailed analysis of both manufacturing processes including end to end supply chain costs and CO2 footprint calculation. Our results show that Magnesium production with green energy in Europe can deliver competitive results compared to established processes.