Mining Industry Analysis including Commodity Prices, Production Volumes, Projects and Capex, Regulatory Changes and Technology Advancements, Q4 2021 & Full Year

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Development of COVID-19 vaccines and improving economic outlook reduced the attractiveness of gold as a haven in Q1 2021. In 2021 prices of all major commodities averaged higher than in 2020. The most significant increases were in thermal coal, coking coal, iron ore, and copper. In Q4 thermal coal prices also rose steeply, and there was a slight recovery in the iron ore price following a sharp decline in Q3. While Russia was a key supplier of gold in 2020, other factors are causing the price to rise, including gold’s role as a haven, inflationary fears, and the ruling out of any substantial interest rate increase in March by the Fed.

After declining for four consecutive months, the global silver price improved in October. While a strengthening US dollar created pressure on silver prices, an economic recovery with rising demand, inflationary pressures with rising government deficits, and continuing low-interest rates have supported silver prices.

Which are the key commodity in the global mining industry?

The key commodities in the global mining industry are gold, silver, platinum, iron ore, thermal coal (Australian), thermal coal (South African), copper, nickel, lead, zinc, tin, and aluminum.

Global mining industry, by commodities

Global mining industry, by commodities

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Coal production outlook

Global coal output is expected to increase in 2022. Anticipated disruption in global gas supplies due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war is expected to stimulate exports of coal, which will be supported by production from upcoming and existing mines. India, Indonesia, Australia, and the US will be the key contributors, while China is also expected to increase its domestic production to reduce its reliance on imports. The entry of private players into the Indian coal industry will play a key role in boosting the domestic supply.

Iron ore production outlook

Global iron ore production increased in 2021, supported by mines returning to full production and improved market conditions. However, China’s curb on steel production impacted the industry during the second half of 2021.

Copper production outlook

Global copper production increased in 2021, attributed to the post-pandemic economic recovery. The long-term transition towards renewable energy is expected to boost demand creating a strong platform for development projects. Uncertainty across Chile and the Peruvian mining industry, however, owing to strikes and protests related to the environmental impact as well as lower ore grades, remained a key barrier.

Gold production outlook

World gold mine production recovered in 2021 linked to post-COVID operational recoveries. Canada remained the largest contributor to this growth followed by South Africa the US and Mexico. The growth completely offset declines elsewhere including China, Australia, and Papua New Guinea. It remains to be seen how the war in Ukraine and sanctions imposed on Russia by major economies such as Japan, the EU, and the UK will affect gold production.

Who are the leading miners in the global mining industry?

Some of the leading miners in the global mining industry are BHP Billiton Limited, Rio Tinto Plc, Anglo American Plc, Glencore Plc, Vale S.A, ArcelorMittal SA, Freeport-McMoRan Inc, Teck Resources Limited, Barrick Gold Corporation, and Antofagasta.

Global mining industry, by leading miners

Global mining industry, by leading miners

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Market Report Scope

Key commodity prices Gold, Silver, Platinum, Iron Ore, Thermal Coal (Australian), Thermal Coal (South African), Copper, Nickel, Lead, Zinc, Tin, and Aluminum
Leading miners BHP Billiton Limited, Rio Tinto Plc, Anglo American Plc, Glencore Plc, Vale S.A, ArcelorMittal SA, Freeport-McMoRan Inc, Teck Resources Limited, Barrick Gold Corporation, and Antofagasta.


  • Analyze mineral commodity trends at a global level
  • Track ESG developments in the mining industry
  • Company production highlights for Q1 2021
  • Analyze project developments in the mining industry
  • Compare the number of development projects in the mining industry by country, commodity, and company
  • Track the latest mining industry developments
  • Geographies covered include – Asia-Pacific, Americas, Europe, Middle East, Africa, Oceania, and the Former Soviet Union.
  • Analyze the impact of coronavirus on the global mining industry

Reasons to Buy

  • A comprehensive evaluation of all development projects by commodity, country, and company
  • Assess trends in project momentum
  • Analyze forecasted production trends for core commodities
  • Understand trends with 2020 capex guidance for leading miners
  • Track the latest company developments
  • A comprehensive evaluation of the impact of coronavirus on the global mining industry
  • To understand ESG related developments in the mining industry

Table of Contents


Commodity Trends

Development Projects Update

Capital Expenditure

Demand Drivers

Regulatory Developments

ESG in Mining

Technology in Mining

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