Bloomberg: A sharp increase in EU imports of rare earth metals from China via Russia

Bloomberg reported on Sunday that the supply of rare earth minerals from China to the European Union via Russia has increased significantly in 2022.

In the first nine months of last year, the volume of rare earth minerals mined in China and transported to the European Union via Russia totaled 36,074 tonnes, according to Bloomberg, double the amount transported in 2021.

At the same time, Bloomberg reports that some rare earth minerals supplied by China can be used in the defense industry, in particular lanthanum, which is widely used in the production of armor-piercing ammunition.

Bloomberg quotes Michael Wurmser, founder of the Norwegian company Norge Mining, as saying: “It’s amazing, despite all the sanctions, this supply chain is still working. It highlights how important rare earths are and shows how much we depend on them.”

The agency notes that rail transportation in Russia cuts the delivery time by half. For example, a train from Wuhan in China to Duisburg in Germany takes 16 days, while shipping by sea takes twice as long.

Rare earth minerals are a group of 17 elements required for high-tech industries, and China is the world leader in their extraction, while China’s share in the world production of rare earth minerals is about 70%.

Source: TASS

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