International Tin Council

The International Tin Council (ITC) was an organisation which acted on behalf of major tin producers and consumers to control the international tin market.

An International Tin Study Group, which was established in 1947 to survey world supply of and demand for tin, led to the treaty, the International Tin Agreement, signed in 1954, and the formation of the ITC in 1956.

The objectives were:[1]

  1. to prevent or alleviate widespread unemployment or under-employment and other serious difficulties which are likely to result from maladjustments between the supply of and the demand for tin;
  2. to prevent excessive fluctuations in the price of tin and to achieve a reasonable degree of stability of price on a basis which will secure long-term equilibrium between supply and demand;
  3. to ensure adequate supplies of tin at reasonable prices at all times; and
  4. to provide a framework for the consideration and development of measures to promote the progressively more economic production of tin while protecting tin deposits from unnecessary waste or premature abandonment.

The original members were:

AustraliaBelgian Congo and Ruanda-Urundi
Federal Republic of Germany
United Kingdom
United States of America

After the 1954 agreement, 5 more agreements were signed every five years, in 1960, 1965, 1970, 1975, and 1980.[2]

By the sixth agreement, established at the United Nations Tin Conference, 1980, new consumers included Finland, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal, and Sweden. New producers were Australia, Brazil and Zaire.[3]

At various times Guinea, Mexico, Republic of Korea, the United Arab Republic, Israel, Liberia, Panama, Yugoslavia, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Poland, the Philippines, Czechoslovakia, Taiwan, Romania, Nicaragua, German Democratic Republic, and Austria held membership.


With the advent of aluminium containers, the use of protective polymer lacquers inside cans, and increased recycling by industry, the demand for tin decreased considerably by the early 1980s, and in October 1985 the ITC could no longer maintain the price.[4] It eventually ran out of money buying up tin on the metals markets. Attempts to refinance the ITC were eventually abandoned, and since then, as with many other raw materials, the price has generally declined as alternatives become more attractive.[5]

Association of Tin Producing Countries

In 1984 an Association of Tin Producing Countries was created with members: Australia, Bolivia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria, Thailand, and Zaire.[6] It ceased to exist in 2001. [7]


  4. Tin Prices 1998 - Minerals, United States Geological Survey
  5. Martha, Rutsel Silvestre J (31 May 2016). The Financial Obligation in International Law. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780191055966.
  6. “Agreement establishing the Association of Tin Producing Countries ATS 10 of 1984". Australasian Legal Information Institute, Australian Treaties Library. Retrieved on 14 June 2017.
  7. "Association of Tin Producing Countries". Union of International Associations, UIA Open Yearbook. Retrieved on 23 May 2019.
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