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WSA gets boost after Indonesian intervention

Nickel miner Western Areas (WSA) has received a major boost to its nickel business on geopolitical news out Indonesia.

Over the weekend Indonesia banned the export of raw materials as it looks to create domestic growth on a the home front by promoting the construction and utilisation of smelters and processing plants on Indonesian soil rather than places like China.

Currently Indonesia makes up approximately 50% of the raw nickel market that is shipped China. The value lost with China then on processing the raw material mined in Indonesia is what the country is looking to extract with this new law.

Therefore nickel producers with operations outside of Indonesia are receiving renewed interest and most notable is WSA as its Forrestania Nickel Project in WA looks to cash in on the change to operations from one of its biggest competitors.

Having seen weak nickel prices over the past year, WSA has seen its share price halve in 2013 as prices dropped and CAPEX continued to ramp up. This news from Indonesia is certainly a relief and has seen the nickel price spiking 4.6% on the weekend leading to a 9.5% share price jump.

However I believe this will not be enough to drive the share price significantly higher over the coming months. The short term spike I think will be overridden by the fundamentals that show WSA still has a long way to go.  

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