Last year China produced 78 percent of the world's rare earth minerals, according to researchers at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. China announced this week that it will not be taking a more personal role in the country's rare earth industry, given how it has now become a vital resource that could persuade the United States to a fairer trade deal. "There will be significant growth outside China so long as customers are confident in supply". "But because China had the domestic expertise and industrial infrastructure, this enabled the industry to locate relatively easily".
The country's tariff tactics might present an image of Fortress America battling its adversaries, but a new critical minerals strategy advocates greater co-operation between the US and its friends.
"I would encourage the federal government to move as quickly as possible, and "buy American" is one way to do that", said Anthony Marchese, chairman of Texas Mineral Resources Corp, which is seeking $300 million to develop the Round Top rare earth deposit in Texas. "The Lynas/Blue Line joint venture will help ensure that US companies have continued access to rare earth products by providing a USA -based source".More news: U.S. risks losing measles 'elimination status' as cases breach 1000
In December 2017, Trump called on the Department of Commerce and other USA agencies to develop new sources of critical materials to reduce vulnerabilities to supply disruptions, especially from foreign sources.
According to reports on Reuters, the US Department of Defense has been speaking with rare earth miners in Africa and other parts of the world in a bid to diversify supply outside of China.
"We welcome this report and hope that the Commerce Department's "Call to Action" results in some real action from Washington", said James Litinsky, co-chairman of MP Materials. In September 2016, the DLA held stocks of several critical minerals worth up to $1.15 billion.More news: Conservatives Battle to Replace Theresa May
During the initial phase of expansion to rare earth mineral processing, Blue Line Corp.is expected to focus on the separation of terbium (used in solid-state devices), dysprosium (used in magnets and lasers), and other heavy rare-earth. Which is why the moment Beijing does pull the plug on these exports, is the moment trade war between the two superpowers will have crossed the rubicon, and no amount of dovish jawboning by Powell will be able to offset the coming risk rout.
A technician works at a rare earth processing company in Ganzhou, Jiangxi province. However, rare earths aren't as hard to come by as the term signals, but its refining process is costly and generates pollution. It also called for closer cooperation with United States allies, which dovetails with DLA's outreach to miners in Africa and elsewhere.More news: James to join Manchester United in reported €20M move