Rare Earth Prices at Record Level

18. February 2022 | Market

Domestic demand for raw materials in China continues to rise.

The continuing strong demand for rare earths by Chinese industry has led to a new price high this week. Within a year, the price of praseodymium-neodymium oxide, for example, has risen 135 percent, reports Business Korea magazine.

One factor currently driving demand for rare earths in the People’s Republic is electromobility. According to Business Korea, 530,000 e-cars were sold in the country in December alone. That was more than ten times as many new registrations as the Federal Motor Transport Authority registered in Germany in the same month.

The share of zero-emission vehicles in China is expected to increase significantly from 15 to 20 percent in the current year, reports the Global Times, and the demand for resources will increase accordingly. Domestic production is currently unable to keep pace with the rising demand. The supply of strategic raw materials from Myanmar has not yet stabilized completely, the Global Times adds. China sources about ten percent of its rare earths from the neighboring country. Due to the Corona pandemic, raw material exports came to a standstill between July and November (we reported).

While Chinese industry experts comment according to Global Times that rare earths have now reached their true value, the price development is likely to be viewed with concern, especially abroad.

Photo: iStock/champc

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