Helium: Focus on Europe


From Helium Shortage 2.0 to the early curtailment of Helium Shortage 3.0 last year at the hands of the Covid-19 pandemic, the last decade in the global helium business has been dominated by stories of supply and demand.

Naturally for any sector in such a position, those stories have largely focused on the industry pinch points and the geographies at the heart of meeting the worldwide demand. That means we’ve consistently seen regions like North America and the Middle East (think Qatar) in focus in terms of supply, while the Asia-Pacific region has also made waves for its growing consumption of this precious resource.

With the exception of the long-awaited Amur plant in Eastern Siberia and news of the Irkutsk Oil plant also in Russia, it’s fair to say that Europe has seldom been in the helium headlines. In the view of Eduardo Gil Elejoste, President of Nippon Gases Europe (NGE), however the region should ‘also be part of the conversation’ given that it accounted for up to 20% of the global helium market in 2019.

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