(Editor’s Note: Ever since the US began negotiating with China over fair trade and tariffs under the Trump administration, some Chinese scholars have talked about restricting rare earth exports from China as an powerful weapon against the US. However, recent news showed that Chinese manufacturers of rare earth cannot generate large profits, making people wonder if Beijing really has the power to control the rare earth market.)
China’s online news media Sina reported that, in the first half of this year, Chinese rare earth companies experienced a significant drop in revenue and profits due to falling demands and prices. This contrasts sharply with the high prosperity of the same period last year. Companies like China Rare Earth (中国稀土), Northern Rare Earth (北方稀土), Rising Nonferrous Metals Share (广晟有色), and Xiamen Tungsten (厦门钨业) all reported a slump in net profits. Additionally, industry leader Jiangsu Huahong Technology (华宏科技) went from being profitable to reporting a loss. Experts attribute the continuous decline in rare earth prices to insufficient demand and increased supply. The second half of the year remains uncertain, as the future trend depends on whether demand will increase substantially.
Source: Sina, July 19, 2023