China hikes 2022 rare earth quota by 25% on rising demand
(Adds year-on-year comparison)
By Siyi Liu and Dominique Patton BEIJING, Aug 17 (Reuters) - China raised its annual rare earth mining output quota by a quarter to a fresh record high in the wake of rising global demand.
China is the world's dominant producer of rare earths, a group of 17 minerals used in everything from consumer electronics to military equipment. The quotas are closely watched as a supply indicator and typically issued twice a year. The full-year rare earth mining output quota has been set at 210,000 tonnes, up 25% from 168,000 tonnes in 2021. That includes a 100,800 tonne quota granted for the first batch issued in January and a 109,200 tonne quota in a second batch announced on Wednesday by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) and the Ministry of Natural Resources said in a joint statement. China has raised the annual quota for five years in a row.
The smelting and separation of rare earth quota was set at 202,000 tonnes, up 24.7% from 162,000 tonnes a year earlier.
That includes 97,200 tonnes in the first batch and a 104,800 tonnes in the second batch.
(Reporting by Siyi Liu and Dominique Patton; Editing by Kim Coghill)