China’s rare earth metals are being undersold due to ‘vicious competition’ domestically and face low resource utilisation, announced the country’s Minister of Industry and Information Technology Xiao Yaqing during a news briefing.
There are no signs that China will restrict its rare earth exports in the near term, Reuters was told on Monday. China’s decision to publish a draft of rare earth industry regulations in January – following news about a export control law in November – sparked global market discussions.
‘The rare earth industry regulations are designed to let the market play a decisive role in allocating resources, and are in accordance with the long-term development strategy and market demand for rare earths, as well as the problems existing in the industry’s development,’ reports Xiao.
‘People in some countries have said China is or will restrict rare earth exports, but most of the rare earths they have bought are currently from China.’
The other reasons for the government to formulate the industry regulations include environmental issues caused by rare earth mining and production and the ‘unreasonably’ low prices at which China’s rare earths are sold, Xiao went on to state.