SHANGHAI, Feb 8 (SMM) - The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology as well as the Ministry of Natural Resources issued the first batch of rare earth mining (100,800 mt) and smelting/separation (97,200 mt) quotas for 2022 on January 28.
In terms of rare earth mining, the light rare earth mining quotas increased by 23.2% year-on-year, while the middle and heavy rare earth mining quotas remained unchanged year-on-year.
Among them, the Northern Light Rare Earth obtained a quota of 60,200 mt, an increase of 36.5% year-on-year, accounting for 67.41% of the total light rare earth mining quotas.
China Rare Earth Group's light rare earth mining quota stood at 29,100 mt, up 2.8% year-on-year, and accounting for 32.5% of total light rare earth mining quotas; the middle and heavy rare earth mining quota was 7,806 mt, flat year-on-year and accounting for 67.9% of the total, still topping all other rare earth groups.
Guangdong Rare Earth Group and Xiamen Tungsten's rare earth mining quotas were flat year-on-year.
The gross separation/smelting quotas increased by 20% year-on-year, including 53,800 mt of separation/smelting quota for Northern Rare Earth, an increase of 40.4% year-on-year and accounting for 55.4% of the total; 34,700 mt for China Rare Earth Group, an increase of 2% year-on-year and accounting for 35.7% of the total.
The newly issued rare earth mining and separation/smelting quotas are expected to ease the tight rare earth supplies in the first two quarters of 2022, calming the market to some extent. Nonetheless, the supply shortage will still exist throughout 2022.