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Don't want to be strangled by China? The United States plans to build rare earth processing plants in the desert
Sep 27,2020 14:15CST
The content below was translated by Tencent automatically for reference.

SMM9, March 27 / PRNewswire-FirstCall-Asianet /-- the United States has agreed to provide funding for MP Materials (, a private equity-backed company, to buy the Mountain Pass mine for $20.5 million in 2017) to design the first U.S. heavy rare earth processing facility, the, Mountain Pass mine in California's Mojave Desert and one of the largest light rare earth mines operating outside China.

The disruption of the supply chain during the outbreak has made many countries realize that the supply of key raw materials and goods should not be dependent on a country or company. "We certainly already know that a single point of failure on any key issue in the global supply chain is a huge challenge," said James Litinsky, chief executive of MP Materials.

The Mountain Pass mine first began to supply rare earths in 1952 and once became the world's mainstream supplier of rare earths. Previously, the mine's "old owner" was the only US rare earth producer, American molybdenum company Molycorp Inc. (MCP). However, the company filed for bankruptcy in 2015 because of the collapse in commodity prices, which took a toll on investors and led the US to stop mining, Mountain Pass, which is almost entirely dependent on China to supply rare earths.

On the evening of July 11, 2017, Shenghe Resources announced that its joint asset purchase agreement for overseas rare earth mine Mountain Pass had been approved by the Delaware bankruptcy Court of the United States, and that the company's cooperation agreement on a series of overseas rare earth mining projects had entered into force. It is worth noting that the bidding for Shenghe Resources has adopted a cooperative approach with overseas institutions. According to the announcement, overseas investment companies JHL Capital Group and QVT Financial set up a project company MPMO, Shenghe Resources in Delaware to participate in shares through its holding subsidiary Leshan Sheng he, and MPMO as the main body to participate in bidding and follow-up operation of rare earth mines. As a joint development unit, the cooperation agreement shows that Shenghe Resources subsidiary will provide technical and sales services to help the mine resume production, so as to obtain a certain proportion of the project's profit share, product distribution rights and a certain period of time. After recovering the advance payment, Shenghe Resources subsidiary will also become the exclusive distributor of MPMO to assist MPMO in selling rare earth products produced by the mine.

From wind turbines to electric cars to Fmur35 fighter jets, most high-tech products require rare earth metals.


Rare earths
the United States

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