According the data released by China-ASEAN Seminar of Rare Earth Industry Development and the fourth (2018) China Rare Earth Forum, the total global production of rare earth increased by 56,000 tons from 134,000 tons in 2017 to 190,000 tons in 2018, of which China accounted for 120,000 tons, and the United States and Australia contributed 20,000 tons respectively.
So, where did the 190,000 tons of rare earth come from?
First, some of rare earth came from America. There were not any rare earth exploited in America, but the situation began to change in 2018.As the Mountain Pass, etc. has resumed production at the beginning of the year, the estimated production hit around 20,000 tons, accounting for 10.5% of the global production of rare earth.
Second, China contributed a lot. The total production of rare earth from China recorded 105,000 tons in 2017, while the quota of the production is 120,000 tons with the increase of 15,000 tons. Although the increased output was not that much, the total took up 63.2% of the global production.
Third, Burma and Australia accounted for the part of the global production. It is estimated that the rare earth output of Australia and Burma both exceeded 20,000 tons in 2018, and the total output of the two countries accounted for 21% of the global output. In addition, the production of rare earth, came from the other countries and regions around the world, added up to around 10,000 tons. Thus, the total global production amounted to about 190,000 tons.
China, Japan, the United States and Europe has emerged as the major consumption markets around the world.
Currently, China has emerged as the biggest producer of rare earth, and also the biggest exporter and consumer in the world, consuming 56.5% of the global consumption. Permanent magnetic materials account for the largest share of rare earth consumption, followed by petrochemical industry and other material industries (such as, hydrogen storage, fluorescent material, polishing, catalyst material, etc.).
Japan ranks No.2 in terms of rare earth consumption, accounting for 21% of the total. The rare earth was mainly utilized in the fields of polishing powder, permanent magnet materials and catalysts in Japan. The United States and Europe become No.3 with a proportion of 8% in global consumption of rare earth. The United States employs the rare earth in chemical catalysts, alloy smelting, petroleum catalysts and exhaust gas catalysts, etc., while Europe makes use of rare earth on catalysts, glass-ceramic, alloys, etc.
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