International Copper Study Group

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The International Copper Study Group (ICSG) is an intergovernmental organisation of copper producing and consuming states that functions as the international commodity board for copper. Its main purpose is to increase copper market transparency and promote international discussions and cooperation on issues related to copper. As of 2015, ICSG Share in the World Copper Market represents 76 percent of world copper mine production, 84 percent of world copper refined production and 81 percent of the world copper refined usage.

The creation of the ICSG was negotiated in 1989 in Geneva and was agreed to in a multilateral treaty known as the Agreement establishing the Terms of Reference of the International Copper Study Group. The ICSG came into existence on 23 January 1992, with headquarters in Lisbon, Portugal.

In order to fulfil its mandate, the Study Group has three main objectives:

  • Increase market transparency by promoting an exchange of information on production, consumption, stocks, trade, and prices of copper, by forecasting production and consumption, and by assessing the present and future capacities of copper mines, plants, smelters and refineries.
  • Promote international cooperation on matters related to copper, such as health and the environment, research, technology transfer, regulations and trade.
  • Provide a global forum where industry and governments can meet and discuss common problems/objectives. The ICSG is the only inter-government forum solely dedicated to copper.

ICSG publishes monthly Bulletins with statistical data on copper mine, smelter and refinery production, copper usage, stocks, prices and trade for copper products. ICSG also publishes Directories on the current and planned development of world mines, smelters and refineries and semis plants. ICSG maintains one of the world's most complete historical and current databases with copper statistics. ICSG also undertakes regular studies on topics of interest to the copper industry such as:

  • Copper Scrap Market Recovery in NAFTA (2012)
  • Copper Scrap Supply Survey in China (2012)
  • By-Products of Copper, Zinc, Lead and Nickel (2012)
  • Risk Factors in Developing Minerals and Metal Projects (2013)
  • Taxation, Royalties and Other Fiscal Measures Applied to the Non-Ferrous Metals Industry (2014)
  • Cobalt as a By-Product of Copper and Nickel (2014)
  • Survey of Brass Mills, Copper Products and Foundries in China (2014)
  • Middle East and North Africa Copper Use Study (2014)
  • Fabrication and Copper Use in Indian Subcontinent, ASEAN and Oceania (2015)
  • Study of By-Products of Lead, Zinc, Copper and Nickel and Directory (2015)
  • ICSG World Copper Factbook 2015 (available complimentary on ICSG website)

Membership in the ICSG is open to any state that is involved in the production, trade, or consumption of copper. As of 2015, there are 24 members, including the European Union:

There are six states that were previously full members of ICSG, but have withdrawn from the organisation:

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