Vietnam is to put up for auction its largest rare earth mineAccording to a project partner on Thursday, Vietnam is to put up for auction the rights to operate its largest rare earth mine as it seeks to compete with China in an industry vital to high-tech devices.
According to Luu Anh Tuan, director of Vietnam Rare Earth JSC (VTRE), a project partner, Australian mining company Blackstone Minerals is planning to hold a tender for the mining of the Dong Pao mine in northern Lai Chau province.
We will use the ore from this mine for production, and whoever wins the auction will be able to exploit the mine, he told AFP.
Following US President Joe Biden’s visit to the country in Southeast Asia last month, the two countries decided to step up their collaboration to support Hanoi in estimating and developing its rare earth resources.
The United States has stated that Vietnam, which has the second-largest rare earth deposit behind China, has a crucial role to play as it seeks to source less from China following supply chain shocks that have recently shaken the world economy.
Vietnam has stated that it wants to increase production to two million tons annually by 2030. Compared to just 400 tons in 2021, its output increased dramatically to 4,300 tons last year, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).
The world’s largest manufacturer is, by far, China. Lai Chau Rare Earth Joint Stock Company and a Japanese partner were given authorization by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment in 2014 to utilize the Dong Pao mine, but state media reported that technical and financial challenges prevented the project from moving forward.
A collection of 17 heavy metals known as rare earths are widely distributed in the earth’s crust. But because mining for metals necessitates the use of numerous chemicals, which produce vast quantities of hazardous waste and have resulted in a number of environmental catastrophes, many nations are reluctant to bear the high manufacturing costs.
Every single rare earth is utilized in industry and may be found in a wide range of modern and high-tech products, such as lightbulbs and guided missiles.