January 19, 2011

China Strengthens 2011 Rare Earths Regulation

The Ministry of Land and Resources has designated 11 rare earth mining blocks in Jiangxi as national planning centres

(Beijing) – China has drawn-up national planning regions for rare earth and iron mines to strengthen government regulation over the development of the metals.

According to the Ministry of Land and Resources, the national planning regions are comprised of 11 rare earth mining blocks covering 2,534 square meters in Ganzhou, Jiangxi Province. It also includes 466.94 square meters of vanadium titano-magnetite mining areas in western Panzhihua in Sichuan Province.

Since 2010, the Chinese government has accelerated the consolidation of the country's rare earth resources. According to a plan set by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, China will reduce the number of rare earth refining companies to 20 from the current number of more than 100 by 2015.

The Ministry of Commerce set quotas for 2011's first batch of rare earth exports at 14,446 metric tons on December 28, a 35 percent decline from the same period last year.

China accounts for more than 90 percent of the world's supply of rare earths, elements essential for high-tech electronics and electric vehicles.

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