September 5, 2012

LYNAS Corporation Receives TOL Temporary Operating License

Published on Wednesday September 05 2012 (AEST)


LYNAS Corp has gained a temporary operating license for its rare-earths refinery in Malaysia and expects to begin operations at the plant next month. "Receiving this licence from the Malaysian Atomic Energy Licensing Board is a significant milestone for Lynas," said Lynas Executive Chairman Nicholas Curtis in a statement.

Lynas' share price had Wednesday traded at just one third of where it stood 12 months ago, after continued uncertainty over the Malaysian project weighed on the stock in recent months. Lynas's $US230 million Malaysian processing plant is intended to produce about a sixth of the world's supply of rare-earths at full production. Rare earths are used in products ranging from electric car batteries to smartphone touch screens. The company finished construction on the first phase of the plant last month, moving the company closer to its goal of breaking China's grip on the industry.

Chinese firms currently account for about 95 per cent of global output, and steps by the government there to limit exports of raw materials to help develop its own manufacturing industries has piqued worldwide concern over a potential supply shortfall and over-reliance on a single source for the raw materials. Still, Lynas' project has run into opposition from activists and politicians in Malaysia because of the perceived hazard from radioactive waste.

Thousands of people had rallied in protest against the plant in February on concern that radioactive waste may seep into the ground and water, harming the environment and people's health. Lynas has insisted the plant is safe, and that any radioactive waste produced wouldn't harm human health. The refinery, located in the eastern Malaysian state of Pahang, will process material extracted from Lynas' Mount Weld rare-earths deposit in Australia.


PRESS STATEMENT
BY EXECUTIVE SECRETARY,
ATOMIC ENERGY LICENSING BOARD (BOARD)

DECISION ON THE ISSUANCE OF THE TEMPORARY OPERATING LICENCE (TOL) TO LYNAS (MALAYSIA) SDN. BHD.


1. The Atomic Energy Licensing Board (Board) at its meeting on 30 January 2012 had decided to approve the application for a TOL by Lynas (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. (Lynas), subject to several conditions. The TOL, however, was not issued since Lynas need to fulfil additional conditions under Act 304 and its subsidiary regulations.


2. The Board at its meeting on Monday, 3 September 2012, was satisfied that Lynas has fulfilled all technical aspects, including the institution of dust control measures and radioactivity immobilisation methodologies in its residue management system, and all regulatory requirements. The Board also took note that Lynas has made a commitment to remove from Malaysia the Water Leach Purification residue arising from its LAMP project. In this regard, the Board has decided to issue the TOL to Lynas, to be effective for two years from 3 September 2012 to 2 September 2014. The TOL will enable Lynas to conduct trial processing of lanthanide concentrates in stages and in limited quantities under close and continuous surveillance by the authorities.


Atomic Energy Licensing Board

Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI)
5 September 2012

Note:


A Press Briefing will be held at 10 am, Bilik Mesyuarat Lembaga, Ibu Pejabat Lembaga Perlesenan Tenaga Atom, Batu 24 Jalan Dengkil, 43800 Selangor on Friday 7 September 2012.






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