Skip to main content
a glove hand holding nickel



Nickel is metal which is magnetic, recyclable, resists corrosion and oxidation and has a high melting point. 

With these useful properties, nickel is which is primarily used as an alloy - most notably to create stainless steel.

Our Cerro Matoso operation in Colombia is a significant producer of ferronickel - an iron-nickel alloy.

Key stats

40.8 KT

FY23 nickel production

Key uses of nickel

an icon of stainless steel

Stainless steel

Learn more

an icon of a wind turbine and a solar panel

Renewable energy technology

Learn more

an icon of a battery


Learn more

An icon of a stack of coins


Learn more

Nickel, and particularly the type of ferronickel we produce, is primarily used in the production of stainless steel.

Stainless steel that includes nickel is used in the food processing, transportation and manufacturing industries, as well as in surgical instruments. As stainless steel is heat-resistant, hard to damage and easy to keep clean it is commonly used in everyday household items, especially in the kitchen, like bench tops and pots and pans.

Nickel has an important role to play as the world transitions to a more sustainable future as it is used as an alloy in wind, solar and geothermal power infrastructure. Nickel-rich batteries are also critical for the rapid adoption of electric vehicles.

Nickel also continues to be used as an alloy in coins in various jurisdictions, including Australia and the United States.

Producing nickel

South32 produces ferronickel at our Cerro Matoso operation in Colombia, which includes both an open-cut laterite mine and a smelter.