Raw materials and energy provide the foundation of economic growth and the associated increase in the quality of life worldwide.

Global resource consumption more than tripled from 22 to 70 billion metric tons annually between 1970 and 2010 alone, while the world’s population did not double during this same period.

The OECD predicts that the development will intensify as the world’s population rises to 10 billion people in 2060. They predict that global resource consumption will double to 167 billion tons by 2060. Non-metallic minerals such as sand, gravel and lime will continue to account for the largest share.

Global raw material consumption 1970-2017

Source: World Bank Group; based upon UN IRP Global Material Flows Database

Energy resources are an integral part of our complex society. Their availability has made modern public life, scientific activities and industrial developments possible. Industrial progress and access to electricity have significantly reduced the proportion of people living in extreme poverty in recent decades.

Coal accounts for 27% of the primary energy mix, making it the world’s most important energy source alongside crude oil, and it will remain so for a long time to come, due to the lack of alternatives.

Global coal consumption 1965-2019 in EJ

Source: BP Statistical Review of World energy

Global hard coal production has grown strongly over the last century in line with the steady increase in demand for energy. It has been at a stable level of around 7,000 million tons per year for around ten years.

In 2019, 1,221 million tons, so around 17% of global production, were traded – mainly via sea routes. HMS Bergbau AG expects these trends to continue in the future, despite the political shift in Western countries. With an additional focus on the strong coal growth markets in Africa and the Asia-Pacific region, the group expects continuous growth in the trading business.

Coal production and world coal trade in 2019

Source: VdKi Jahresbericht 2020

Within OECD countries, HMS Bergbau AG focuses on raw materials that are crucial for the fulfillment of political ambitions to reduce emissions. Thus, the focus for the European market lies on value chains for raw materials classified as critical by the European Commission, which are of fundamental importance for the realization of these political ambitions.