Benchmark three-month copper prices surged to a six-week high of $US5,269 ($8,158) per tonne on expectations that demand will increase as lockdown restrictions are eased and factories in China and Europe restart operations.

While prices have since slipped to $US5,199, this is still up significantly from its price of about $US4,371 per tonne in mid-March.

This comes after the Bank of Japan expanded its monetary stimulus program and pledged to buy unlimited amounts of government bonds and the world’s second largest car manufacturer Volkswagen reopened its factory at Wolfsburg, Germany.

The phased restart of Wolfsburg, reportedly the largest car factory in the world, comes after Volkswagen made about 100 operational changes to safeguard its workforce from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reuters reported that China’s imports of copper concentrate in March edged up 1.03 per cent year-on-year to 1.78 million tonnes as it boosted imports from alternative sources to make up for reduced shipments from Peru and Chile.

READ: Copper supply tightens as China gets back to work; why this is good news for the red metal

ASX small cap base metal companies

Oakdale Resources (ASX:OAR) has joined the rushed of companies looking to pick up acreage near Chalice Gold Mines’ (ASX:CHN) Julimar high-grade nickel-copper-palladium discovery with the acquisition of the Crown project just 8km to the west.

Crown is believed to be prospective for platinum group elements (PGE), nickel and copper.

The 93sqkm project covers a series of prominent magnetic structures similar to and extending from the Julimar Complex that have not been drill tested.


Oakdale noted that Chalice’s broad PGE and nickel-copper intersections, which remain open in all directions, point to a regional scale discovery that may extend far beyond its initial lateral delineation.

As a result, the company believes that Crown has the potential to host an extension or repeat of a similar polymetallic orebody.

Meanwhile, Venture Minerals (ASX:VMS) has discovered its second new volcanic massive sulphide (VMS) target in as many weeks at its Golden Grove North project in Western Australia.

The new Neptune target is interpreted to sit within the Golden Grove Mine Sequence that hosts all VMS deposits discovered in the Golden Grove Camp.

Recent examination of historic data had unveiled highly anomalous copper and VMS pathfinder elements intersected by shallow holes within the target.


Venture will carry out land-based electromagnetic surveys next month on both the previously discovered Vulcan and the new Neptune targets.