Politics and Commodities

These days everything is politicised it appears to me so perhaps it’s no wonder that it seems as if commodity trading is increasingly about politics and not so much about supply and demand. When we give our briefings these days, geopolitics seem to form or be behind the larger drivers in the commodities world including everything from increased regulations of all forms and especially net zero, sustainability and other political initiatives, as well as sanctions, tariffs and duties, and so on. Geopolitical forces are reshaping the commodities industries for better or for worse depending upon your viewpoint. In the couple of weeks since the new year began, this political influence appears to be growing. We have seen the German Government razing a village to expand a coal mine (the only other Government I am aware of razing villages was the Soviet era Czechoslovak Government along the Austrian border to protect its people from the decadent west), the British Government using the Russian situation to justify its investment in nuclear fuels, and the Malaysian Government threatening to retaliate against EU edicts on deforestation by banning the export of its palm oil. Now, maybe I’m just seeing something that was always a… continue reading

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