Taps Coogan – February 7th, 2022
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The following chart, from Statista, shows global rare earth mine production since 1994. Compared to its near total monopoly in the 2000s, China’s domination of the rare earth mining industry has in fact moderated in recent years, with large mines now online in the US, Myanmar, and Australia. That has pushed China’s share of rare earth mine output down to roughly 60%.
However, the full story on rare earths must include discussion of the processing of the rare earth mine output highlights above. That industry, the processing of rare earths, remains highly concentrated in China. While there are many plans for processing facilities outside of China, there remains essentially only one commercial scale processing facility outside of China, a Lynas plant in Malaysia.
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