China Reduces Rare Earth Exports Needed for Electronics
December 28, 2010
(ChattahBox World News)— China is playing games again with export quotas of rare earth elements necessary for modern electronic devices and green technologies. China produces 97 percent of the world’s supply of the vital metals and has just announced a 11 percent cut in exports, leaving the industrialized world scrambling for the materials needed for everything from smartphones to laser-guided weapons.
This latest reduction in exports comes on the heels of a whopping 72 percent cut in rare earth metals earlier in the year, driving up prices.
“The new quotas, which may be adjusted during the year, come amid growing international concern about availability of the metals, 97 percent of which are produced in China.”
“Beijing has been gradually reducing its exports of rare earths, citing an increase in domestic demand and environmental concerns. International interest spiked after Japanese manufacturers reported earlier this year that shipments from China were cut off during a diplomatic dispute between the two countries.”
In response, the United States signaled its intention to take action, by filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization.