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Last Month Today May 2023 in review

Supercharging the future: Global lithium mining revenues to attain USD 3.1 billion by 2031 as battery manufacturing anticipated to hold strong position

The demand for Lithium-ion batteries seems to grow daily and the market’s future looks to significantly expand for years to come. The increasing demand for electric vehicles, smartphones, and other electronic devices that use lithium-ion batteries is driving the demand for lithium. Lithium is a key component of these batteries, and as the demand for these products grows, so does the demand for lithium.

Globally, operations in the lithium mining business had scaled back during COVID-19 but the market has fully recovered as a report from Fact.MR projected that the Lithium mining revenues to attain USD 3.1 Billion by 2031, with battery manufacturing anticipated to hold strong position.

The report said there are several drivers for the market. “Governments across the globe are promoting the use of electric vehicles as a means of reducing carbon emissions and achieving climate change targets. This has led to increased investment in the development of electric vehicle infrastructure and the expansion of lithium-ion battery production capacity. Lithium-ion batteries are increasingly being used for energy storage systems, particularly in renewable energy applications. As the use of renewable energy grows, the demand for lithium is expected to increase as well.”

Emerging markets such as China and India are seeing rapid growth in the adoption of electric vehicles and renewable energy, which is driving demand for lithium. As technology improves, the use of lithium-ion batteries is becoming more efficient, leading to increased demand for high-quality lithium. Overall, the growing demand for lithium-ion batteries, coupled with government initiatives to promote renewable energy and electric vehicles, is expected to drive the growth of the lithium mining market in the coming years. Over the next ten years, the worldwide lithium mining industry is expected to grow at a 7% CAGR by 2031.

Getting the big picture: Shutterstock to acquire GIPHY, the world’s largest GIF library and search engine

Shutterstock, Inc., a premier partner for transformative brands, digital media, and marketing companies, announced that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire GIPHY, Inc. from Meta Platforms, Inc. GIPHY is the world’s largest collection of GIFs and stickers that supplies casual conversational content.

GIPHY’s vast library of GIFs and stickers draws more than 1.3 billion search queries on a daily basis and powers more than 15 billion daily media impressions. These impressions are distributed via GIPHY’s more than 14,000 API/SDK integrations and its owned-and-operated website and mobile app. GIPHY’s content serves as a critical ingredient in text- and message-based conversations on platforms such as Meta, other social media platforms such as TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat and team collaboration platforms such as Slack and Microsoft Teams, in addition to integrations with most mobile devices.

“This is an exciting next step in Shutterstock’s journey as an end-to-end creative platform,” remarked Shutterstock CEO Paul Hennessy. “Shutterstock is in the business of helping people and brands tell their stories. Through the GIPHY acquisition, we are extending our audience touch points beyond primarily professional marketing and advertising use cases and expanding into casual conversations.”

A ray of light at the end of the tunnel: Commodity prices to register sharpest drop since the pandemic

Global commodity prices are expected to decline this year at the fastest clip since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, clouding the growth prospects of almost two-thirds of developing economies that depend on commodity exports, according to the World Bank’s latest Commodity Markets Outlook report.

The drop in prices, however, is expected to bring little relief to the nearly 350 million people across the world who face food insecurity. Although food prices are expected to fall by 8% in 2023, they will be at the second-highest level since 1975. Moreover, as of February this year, annual food price inflation is at 20% globally, the highest level over the past two decades.

Overall, commodity prices are expected to fall by 21% in 2023 relative to last year. Energy prices are projected to decline by 26% this year.

“The surge in food and energy prices after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has largely passed due to slowing economic growth, a moderate winter, and reallocations in the commodity trade,” said Indermit Gill, the World Bank’s Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for Development Economics. “But this is of little comfort to consumers in many countries. In real terms, food prices will remain at one of the highest levels of the past five decades. Governments should avoid trade restrictions and protect their poorest citizens using targeted income-support programs rather than price controls.”

Everybody’s cup of tea: Supporting smallholder tea producers is an integral part in the transformation of agrifood systems

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) kicked off a global celebration for International Tea Day 2023 at its Rome headquarters.

“In the last three years, the world has faced significant challenges, due to conflicts and economic downturns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, in overlap with extreme weather events due to the climate crisis.” FAO Director-General Qu Dongyu said in his opening remarks. “The tea industry can become an engine for economic growth and for restoration of the ecosystems. It can contribute to our fight against poverty and hunger, and represents a major source of income and employment, especially for rural communities.”

The focus of this year’s celebration is smallholder tea producers and Qu underlined their importance for the sustainability of the sector. “We want to celebrate their achievements, but also raise awareness about the significant challenges they face, and the urgent need to mobilize political will to support them,” he said, adding that “we must all work together and leverage all possible means, including increased and more targeted public and private investments, to transform the tea sector.”

Tea is the world’s most consumed drink, after water, and can bring health benefits and wellness to consumers. Over the past decades, the global tea industry has seen rapid growth, with a remarkable rising number of consumers globally. Especially, tea consumption by the youth segment of the market has expanded. Additionally, the tea sector contributes to socio-economic development, representing a major source of employment and income for millions of poor families worldwide.


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