Precious Metals Industry - Statistics & Facts

Precious metals, such as gold, silver and platinum, are among the most valuable commodities worldwide. The value of the materials is determined by their relative scarcity. In 2016, about 455 metric tons of gold were produced in China, the world's largest producer of gold. To put this into perspective, the production of crude steel reached a staggering 1.63 billion metric tons in the same year.

Silver is both the most abundant and the most affordable precious metal. In 2019, Silver prices are projected to hover around 17 U.S. dollars per ounce. At a projected 1,000 U.S. dollars per ounce in 2019, the price of platinum is expected to be significantly higher. The 2019 price of platinum is forecast to settle at around 1,228 U.S. dollars per ounce, making it the most expensive metal in this group.

The major producing countries for precious metals include Russia, the United States, Canada, South Africa and China. With a production volume of around 5.52 million ounces, Toronto-based Barrick Gold was the world’s leading producer of gold in 2016. In 2015, Fresnillo, KGHM Polska Miedz and Canada's Goldcorp topped the list of silver producers, while Anglo American was ranked as the leading platinum producing company worldwide in 2015.

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