West Perth-based Western Areas has begun the tender process for nickel concentrate offtake that will be available after the expiry of its contract with Jinchuan Group later this year.
The existing Jinchuan contract is for 26,000 tonnes of nickel concentrate, but the volume for the next contract is flexible, Western says.
Managing director Dan Lougher said the timing was right to launch the tender.
“We are in the midst of a resurgent nickel sector where market conditions are very favourable to the company,” he said.
"There is currently a global shortage of quality nickel concentrates that are in such high demand by nickel smelters.
“The Indonesian ban on the export of unprocessed nickel laterite also sees us heading towards a forecast global nickel supply deficit in calendar year 2015.”
The company expects to announce a successful party in the December quarter.
Western Areas closed up 0.4 per cent to $4.91.