promoting the sustainable and responsible production and use of cobalt in all forms

Cobalt SEA (Socio-economic Assessment) Studies

The CI has conducted three complementary SEA (socio-economic assessment) studies to better describe the cobalt value chains in Europe, and a global cobalt SEA study is also planned (2020-21).

The first study involved consolidation of previous survey data collected (2014 to 2017) on manufacture/import and use of cobalt compounds in Europe, into the ‘Cobalt Value Chain’ report (eftec, 2019).

The next study involved a ‘Socio-economic analysis of the cobalt industry in the EEA, 2010-2017’ (Roskill, 2019), which provides an overview of the socio-economic footprint attributable to the production, use, and recycling of cobalt metal and chemicals within the EEA. The SEA model developed for the EEA considers the mined and refined production of cobalt, chemical conversions, and direct use of cobalt in applications (e.g. alloys, batteries, etc.), as well as end-use in manufacturing sectors and products (i.e. aerospace engines, electric vehicles, etc.). In this way the SEA model study assesses both the direct effects relating to the economic activities of the producing companies, as well as the indirect effects related to the downstream and supporting industries.

The third SEA study involves a ‘Scenario-based socio-economic analysis (SEA) of the cobalt industry in the EEA’ (Roskill 2020), and presents forecasts (2018 to 2028) that consider the growing demand for cobalt in battery applications for mobility (electric vehicles), and the importance of the recycling of cobalt-containing products at the end of life.

Overall, these SEA studies illustrate the significant contribution that cobalt provides to value addition (manufacturing), employment (jobs), labour income (wages), tax revenues, and R&D (research and development) activities in Europe. The SEA findings also support the CI’s messaging and outreach activities with industry, policy-makers, and national agencies.

For further information: Cobalt: A socio-economic analysis of its contributions to European economy

If you have any questions or would like to request a copy of these CI reports, please contact