Demand also bounced back from the impact of the global economic downturn by growing by just over 11% in 2010 and a further 9% in 2011. 
 
China now accounts for around 31% of global molybdenum demand and its growth rates continue to outpace those in other countries. This is due to the increased use of stainless and other steels containing molybdenum in process, power and desalination plants, in oil and gas production and distribution and in motor vehicle components. This, combined with robust growth in the economies of the BRIC countries and other countries in Asia and South America, will ensure growing future demand for molybdenum, Roskill says.
 
Primary molybdenum mines were the first to respond to the recovery in demand in 2010, but in 2011 growth in output of by-product molybdenum from copper mines outpaced growth from primary mines. In 2012, mine capacity is sufficient to meet demand and supply is likely to show a surplus over the next three years. Some sixty new projects and expansions could potentially produce molybdenum.
 
The global market for molybdenum is expected to grow by some 60 kilo-tons per year Mo in the years to 2016, and that many projects are likely to be delayed in coming to fruition.