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Beijing moves to tighten rare earth production

Thu, 02/10/2011 - 4:27pm
Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - China has created a "state planning" zone covering the country's biggest rare earth mines in a move to cut production of the vital rare mineral elements used for numerous high-tech goods, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Thursday night.

Exploration and mining of rare earth resources in the zone, an area of 2,500 square kilometers of Jiangxi province in southern China that contains 760,000 metric tons of rare earth mineral deposits, will be subject to stricter state scrutiny and regulatory checks, Xinhua said, citing the Ministry of Land and Resources in Beijing.

"China's rare earth reserves only account for a third in the world but China supplies more than 90 percent of rare earths globally -- that's obviously not sustainable," a ministry official was quoted as saying.

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