Why ASX nickel shares are ending the week with a spring in their step

The nickel industry has been given some good news today.

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A group of people in suits and hard hats celebrate the rising share price with champagne.

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It certainly has been a difficult period for ASX nickel shares.

The price of the battery making ingredient has come under significant pressure after supply from Indonesia increased materially and the London Metals Exchange accepted Indonesian-origin nickel products in response to evolving industry dynamics.

This has led to many ASX nickel shares falling heavily, much to the disappointment of their shareholders.

But things are looking a little more upbeat on Friday, with their shares finishing the week on a high. Here's the state of play in the industry at present:

  • BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) shares are up over 1%
  • IGO Ltd (ASX: IGO) shares are up 5%
  • Nickel Industries Ltd (ASX: NIC) shares are up 6.5%

Why are ASX nickel shares pushing higher?

Investors have been picking up their shares today after the Federal Resources Minister, Madeleine King, placed nickel on the Critical Minerals List.

This gives nickel companies the opportunity to access billions of dollars in Commonwealth funding.

This includes access to financing under the $4 billion Critical Minerals Facility and critical minerals–related grant programs such as the International Partnerships Program.

Minister King revealed that she took action because the nickel industry faces substantial structural challenges that cannot be addressed overnight. King said:

The international nickel price is forecast to stay relatively low through 2024, and likely for several years to come until the surplus of nickel in the market is corrected. In the meantime, this puts further Australian nickel operations at risk. Given impacts to our domestic capacity and noting the broader market developments presently unfolding in the nickel sector, I am fully convinced that we must be proactive in addressing the recent developments, including by adding nickel to the Critical Minerals List.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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