The potash market has experienced rapid growth in the last decade due to an increased demand for food, fibre and feed. This is driven by market fundamentals, including the increase in global population; increasing incomes in emerging markets creating demand for more varied and protein-rich diets; and the decreasing availability of arable land worldwide. Use of fertilisers is the best way to improve cultivation results from soil and increases in potash demand are expected to continue.
Global potash demand is forecast to continue to grow significantly over the next 15 years. This is underpinned by demand growth in emerging markets such as Brazil, Southeast Asia, South America and India. Circum also plans to supply the growing fertiliser market in Africa. Circum’s location close to Red Sea ports will result in substantial transportation advantages, ensuring Circum a strategic location as a preferred potash supplier.
Circum’s Danakil Potash Project will produce sulphate of potash (SOP) with the potential for muriate of potash (MOP) production as well. MOP or potassium chloride (KCl) had a global market of around 70 million metric tons. MOP is commonly used in the commercial cultivation of carbohydrate crops (including wheat, oats and barley). SOP or potassium sulphate, by contrast, represents a small market globally, with demand of in excess of 7 million metric tons. It is primarily used as a fertiliser source of potassium for plants intolerant of the chloride in MOP - mostly higher value fruit and vegetable crops – as well as for its beneficial sulphur content.