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Top Chinese rare earth producer to build stockpile
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Sunday, 02 Jan 2011

Reuters reported that China top rare earth producer, Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Rare Earth is likely to use 9 percent of this year production to build a stockpile that could grow to up to 200,000 tonnes.

The firm is expected to produce about 55,000 tonnes of rare earth oxides this year, flat from last year. A source familiar with the matter said but the regional government of Inner Mongolia has allowed it to supply just 50,000 tonnes to market, as part of Beijing's effort to preserve the resource used in high-tech industries.

The source who did not want to be named for lack of authorization to speak to the media said "You can assume the extra output of 5,000 tonnes will be put into the stockpile."

Baotou Steel Rare Earth did not comment. But in February the firm said it had been approved to build facilities to store 200,000 tonnes of rare earth oxides and the city government of Baotou.

Mr Lan Ke analyst at Southwest Securities' assets management division in Beijing said Baotou Steel Rare Earth's stock building plan will support Chinese and global prices.

Strong Chinese domestic prices could discourage producers from exporting the rare earths of which China is the world's dominant supplier with more than 90% of the global market.

Rare earths are a group of 17 metals used in a wide range of new technologies from hybrid cars to wind turbines.

(Sourced from Reuters)

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