Global Slice 🌍: Silver



[ The below is from 10 minerals.docx ]


530,000 million

Peru has the largest silver reserves in the world, at 93,000 million tonnes, with Australia and Poland close behind. 27,000 million Mexico’s silver mines produced some 6,300 metric tons of silver in 2020, making Mexico the world’s largest silver producer.

Mexico: 6,300 million
Peru: 3,800 million
China: 3,600 million
Russia: 2,100 million
Poland: 1,700 million
Australia: 1,400 million
Chile: 1,300 million
Bolivia: 1,200 million
Argentina: 1,200 million
USA: 980 million Silver is much more commonly found on Earth than gold, platinum or palladium, which is one of the reasons its price is lower than these precious metals.

Silver has a huge number of industrial, commercial and medical uses. The lower price, and reduced scarcity, mean that the reclamation rate of silver is less than that of other precious metals; unlike gold – the majority of which is constantly recycled – large quantities of silver are lost through use, or dumped into landfill.

It is estimated that, by 2018, over 1.6 million tonnes of silver had been physically mined throughout history.

Figures from asset specialists CPM show that 49.9% of this silver has been either consumed by industry, or lost. 45.73% has been used for jewellery, decoration or religious purposes. Only 2.9% has been used for silver coins and just 1.81% is stored as investment silver bullion.

Silver Production

Total silver mined in 2017 was … tonnes. Divided equally between all 7.5 billion people, this would be … per person; divided between 10 million, …; divided between 12.5 billion, ….

The top 10 producing countries are listed and charted below. Click the “▶Remaining countries” legend under the chart to see the others.

Data as above, but charted.
▶Remaining countries
Data as above, but for the remaining countries.