Chromite, or chrome as it is commonly known, is one the most versatile minerals that can be found.
In its natural form, chromite can be used as a refractory lining for high-temperature furnaces. Once transformed into ferrochrome, it becomes the primary alloy used in making stainless steel. There are many other uses for compounds of the metal in specialty chemicals, although tonnages used are minuscule when compared with those going into stainless steel, and for which there is no substitute.
According to the authoritative US Geological Survey (USGS), global chromite resources are estimated at more than 12 billion tons. 95% is estimated to be located in South Africa and Kazakhstan. This is enough to supply the entire world for three or four centuries at the current annual rate of new mine production. Again, according to the USGS, South Africa produces half of the world's mined chromite and of that the bulk goes to China, the world's leading ferrochrome and stainless steel-maker.
Sail occupies a unique, growing and strategic place within this market.