Is the price of helium rising again ?
Disney's helium balloons have long been popular with tourists, but a shortage of global helium supplies and price increases by Japanese gas suppliers have forced Tokyo Disneyland to limit the number of balloons it sells to the amount of helium it buys each month from October. In recent weeks, Disney has stopped selling helium balloons. The supply of helium has been affected to varying degrees in hospitals, aerospace research institutes and other applications.
In addition to being used as an inflatable, helium is also an essential element in magnetic resonance imaging, as well as in deep-sea diving, airbags, rocket fuel, medical applications, and technologies including optical fibers and semiconductors. Especially in recent years, with the large-scale development of the global semiconductor industry, the demand for helium keeps expanding. On the supply side, the us and Qatar are the world's leading suppliers of helium, accounting for 90 per cent. Because of the special nature of helium, which is difficult to collect and store, and because of rising demand, U.S. supplies have plummeted. Over the past decade, the amount of helium imported from the United States has halved, while prices have soared 2.3 times.