2020 Q4 Press Release
The total number of surface mining machines delivered during Q4 increased by 35% while the value of these machines was 26% higher than Q3. Changes to the distribution of Q4 shipments by mineral varied widely from +87% for gold miners to -81% for oil sands (due in large part to fact that oil sands accounts for just 3-4% of equipment markets long-term). A better measure of changes among the major mineral sectors is the annual changes 2020/2019: Gold increased by 50% as mines attempted to take advantage of substantially higher gold prices by boosting capacity. Copper mines increased acquisition of new equipment by a much more modest 13% and iron mines by 5%. On an annual basis, oil sands mines still stood out with a 57% decline vs 2019 presumably reflecting significantly lower oil prices. While not as great percentagewise as oil sands, coal mines reduced their acquisition of new equipment by 55% in 2020. While demand from these mines remains strong in some countries, e.g., Russia, India, coal mining in many others is impacted by substantial and increasing environmental constraints with the sector in many countries in secular decline.