Sinocast reports China's market for rare earths has begun to see negative effects of its crazy growth this year with an increasing number of downstream players finding it difficult to make deals despite price cuts. Prices of certain elements such as cerium used to polish TV screens and lenses are down 10% over the summer after months of break-neck price hikes. Reuters reports China is in the midst of a crackdown on illegal miners and processors and the busy black market trade that have sprung up, but has struggled to impose a REE production cap, with actual annual output exceeding official quotas by 40% to 50% since 2007.
Rare Earth Mining News
Isolated North Korea is desperate to earn some hard currency and look for rare earths in its borders with China.
Colorado Republican Rep. Mike Coffman has been the leading proponent of getting the United States back in the REE game, introducing the Restart Act of 2010, which gives loan guarantees to mining companies, expedites the permitting process, directs the U.S. Geological Survey to scour the country for more supplies, and sets up long-term contracts with the Department of Defense to buy up the REEs produced by American companies.
Quantum Rare Earth Developments announced results for two additional holes of the first of five drill holes from the spring/summer 2011 exploration program at the Elk Creek Niobium – REE Project, located in southeastern Nebraska, USA. Drill holes NEC11-002 and NEC11-003 are the remaining two of three holes which were completed to test the Elk Creek Niobium Deposit.
Wealth completes first phase of diamond drilling at Rodeo de los Molles rare earth element project, Argentina
Wealth Minerals Ltd. (the "Company" or "Wealth") (TSX VENTURE:WML)(FRANKFURT:EJZ) announces the completion of the first phase of diamond drilling at its Rodeo de los Molles ("Rodeo") Rare Earth Element ("REE") Project in San Luis Province, Argentina. The Phase I drilling consisted of 26 drill holes (975.5 metres) targeting outcropping, high-grade REE mineralization confirmed by channel saw sampling results (see Wealth News April 11, 2011 and July 7, 2011).
Saara Kuugongelwa- Amadhila THE mining industry has given Finance Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila until Wednesday to reconsider her intended tax reforms before they alert investors worldwide to “the most devastating elements” of her “proposed
Molycorp, Inc. (NYSE: MCP), the Western hemisphere's only producer of rare earth oxides (REO) and the largest REO producer outside of China, announced that it has reached an agreement with Hitachi Metals to supply the company with rare earth magnetic materials, including Didymium (a mix of neodymium and praseodymium) metal and alloy, as well as Lanthanum Oxide.
Rare earths miner Molycorp on Thursday swung into profit in the second quarter as it ramped up production at Mountain Pass, California, once the world's largest supplier of the sought-after elements used in anything from iPods to stealth helicopters. Net income came to $48.8 million compared with a loss of $23.3 million a year ago. Revenue came in just shy of $100 million, compared with only $1.9 million a year ago. Commenting on the results the company said global demand for rare-earth elements remains "very high" and supply outside China, which controls more than 95% of world output, is tight.
Minerals explorer Greenland Minerals and Energy on Thursday went into a trading halt ahead of an announcement regarding its Kvanefjeld rare earth/uranium/zinc project. The trading halt on the ASX was requested to allow the company time to finalise documentation relating to the acquisition of the outstanding 39% of the project, and would be lifted on August 15.
IAMGOLD's net earnings attributable to equity shareholders were $478.9 million ($1.28 per share) in the quarter, including the gain of $402.6 million from the sale of the Tarkwa and Damang mines. "In January, we said our plan was to divest our minority interest in the Tarkwa and Damang mines for proceeds in excess of $600 million and by the end of June we had closed the sale for gross proceeds of $667 million. During that period, we also confirmed a near 700% increase in mineral resources at our niobium mine and increased our dividend by 150," said Steve Letwin, IAMGOLD's President and CEO.
NTVKenya reports that a rare earth company in Kenya is facing angry opposition from residents who want the company to stop exploration work. The project is located on the south coast, 85 kilometers from Mombasa. The exploration license was issued to Cortec Mining Kenya, a South African company that was incorporated in Kenya last year.
The company is focused on exploration and development of its Goeland rare earth project in the Abitibi region of Quebec, Canada.
Some see it as a strategic masterstroke by China, others, a shocking oversight by the United States. And while the truth lies somewhere in the middle, the fact remains that the US is now wholly dependent on China for some of the most critical components of its modern military hardware.
A small Quebec company says it has uncovered one of the world's most significant deposits of neodymium reports the Montreal Gazette. GeoMegA Resources believes its Montviel property about 500 kilometres northwest of Quebec City, has a huge potential for quick development thanks to the size of the deposit and closeness to infrastructure. Two other companies are active in the region with Commerce Resources announcing significant discoveries on Thursday following its winter drill program at its Eldor rare earth project (pictured) at what it says is ranked as one of the largest REE deposits outside of China. On Friday Vancouver-based Canada Rare Earths announced it acquired a 69.55 km2 rare earth property 350 kilometers south of Montviel adding to its assets adjacent to that of GeoMegA.
Reuters reports that Minmetals has urged all firms in the rare earth sector to maintain the national output quota by suspending production starting from the beginning of August.
It’s sure been an exceptionally-ugly week in the US stock markets! But these scary conditions are a contrarian’s dream, an ideal time to snatch up bargains.
North Bay Resources Inc. announced on Wednesday that the Company has acquired a 100% undivided interest in two rare earth properties in southeastern British Columbia. The Perry River Carbonatite property covers 505 hectares (1,247 acres) and is located approximately 42 kilometres northwest of Revelstoke, BC. The property is known to host niobium, lanthanum, cerium, neodymium, and other REEs.
Ucore Rare Metals Inc. announced on Wednesday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has granted a request for priority permitting of the Company's Bokan Mountain rare earth project in Southeast Alaska. The Department has approved exploration permitting in inventoried roadless areas of the Tongass National Forest proximal to Bokan. The permitting approvals will allow the Bokan project to proceed significantly faster than previously anticipated, reducing project development time by a year or more.
The Korea Herald reports a Korean consortium forged an agreement with Bolivia’s state-run miner Comibol over the weekend to manufacture lithium-ion battery parts, boosting Korea’s bid to tap the largest lithium deposits in the world. A research project involving extracting lithium will begin next month at Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni – an 11,000 square kilometers salt flat (pictured) – with plans for constructing lithium-carbonate processing facilities. The soft, silver-white metal is widely used in rechargeable batteries for mobile phones, laptops and electric cars and the price has been steadily increasing prompting talk of a Opec-style cartel to control production and prices among South American nations that together control 85% of the world's resources.
Due to rare earth's rising costs and unreliable supply, Japanese researchers built an electrical car that doesn't use any REEs. The proof-of-concept car was built by the Tokyo University of Science, and has an output of 50 kW with 95% plus efficiency. Eschewing rare earth materials did cost the car in some aspects. The car has poorer torque and energy efficiency than cars that use rare earth metals.
Great Western Minerals Group (“GWMG”) is pleased to announce that it has contracted DRA Mineral Projects (Pty) Ltd. (“DRA”) of South Africa, a company with a strong track record of utilizing world class standards, for the detailed design of the Steenkampskraal processing plant. DRA is a multi-disciplinary, multi-national organization that specializes in the mining, infrastructure and mineral processing industries. As one of the largest project management enterprises in Africa, the South African-founded group of companies has constructed plants on five continents.
Molycorp's subsidiary has awarded an engineering, procurement and construction contract to KBR to construct a new chlor-alkali plant at its $781m Project Phoenix in California.
Molycorp, Inc. (NYSE: MCP), the Western hemisphere's only producer of rare earth oxides, today announced the award of an Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) contract by a wholly owned subsidiary to KBR (NYSE: KBR) to build a Chlor-Alkali plant as part of Molycorp's state-of-the-art, $781 million Project Phoenix expansion and modernization at its flagship rare earth facility at Mountain Pass, Calif.
At the once-feared commodity trading arms of Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, the pressure to do better in the second half of this year has never been more intense.
Great Western Minerals Group ("GWMG") (TSX VENTURE:GWG)(OTCQX:GWMGF) has negotiated a Heads of Terms with Ganzhou Qiandong Rare Earth Group Ltd. ("GQD") of China to build a rare earth separation plant in South Africa, located in proximity to GWMG's Steenkampskraal operation.