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Vale Strike at Canadian Mine Strains Battery Nickel Supply

  • Pellet disruption drives market to alternative forms of nickel
  • Nickel briquette is fetching a much higher premium in the U.S.
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Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

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A strike at Vale SA’s Sudbury operations in Canada is taxing a nickel market that’s key to powering electric vehicles.

Sudbury is one of the world’s few producers of nickel pellet, a form used to produce alloys for aerospace, electronic and nuclear industries. Production at Vale’s northeast Ontario operation halted when unionized workers went on strike on June 1. The disruption is driving consumers to tap battery-grade nickel briquette as an alternative.