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The EU released the latest list of rare earths and established the "European Raw Material Alliance" to support the continuous development of various fields

Time: 2020-09-14
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In the '2020 Critical Raw Materials (CRM) Newsletter' issued by the European Commission, it contains the key related lists of this year (2020), and includes a total of 30 raw materials such as lithium and rare earths into the scope of protection. In order to ensure that the EU countries can obtain a sustainable supply of raw materials, they have launched an industrial alliance initiative. The core content and characteristics of the new version of CRM communication mainly include the following aspects.

Compared with the 14 raw materials released in 2011, 20 released in 2014 and 27 released in 2017, the increase in data has increased to 30 on this basis in 20 years. The increase in data can not only feel the importance of EU countries, but also It can be seen that the EU's demand for a series of raw materials such as antimony trioxide is increasing. In the 20-year version of the list, the helium released in 17 was eliminated, and four raw materials: bauxite, lithium, titanium and strontium were added. Although helium has been eliminated, it is likely to be included in the list again in the next version update due to its good application prospects in the digital economy such as battery energy storage.

The EU released the latest list of rare earths and established the 'European Raw Material Alliance' to support the continuous development of various fields

The newly added bauxite is mainly because 90% of the bauxite is smelted into metal aluminum, and the finished product obtained by processing it has excellent performance and reasonable price. It is extremely convenient in various fields such as electronics, machinery, and construction. The EU itself has limited bauxite resources and relies on imports. Titanium is very similar to bauxite, while lithium and strontium are very important as rare metals in batteries, special alloys and other fields as 'energy metals in the 21st century'. For these two rare metals, the EU currently relies more on imports from Chile and Australia.

In the supply of the remaining 26 raw materials, the risks are also extremely high. As far as rare earths are concerned, 98% of the EU needs to be imported from China. Others such as borate imports in Turkey also account for 98%, and platinum comes from South Africa, accounting for 71%. For some rare metals, they may even directly rely on a certain company, so that the EU can only fully import them to meet the needs of the EU.

In order to ensure the normal supply of raw materials necessary for life, such as antimony trioxide, the European Union established the 'European Raw Material Alliance' this year, which is also one of the most prominent highlights in this year's communications. Through the EIT RawMaterials consortium under the EU EIT (European Institute of Innovative Technology), all stakeholders in the industrial strategic value chain (including the material industry, universities and research institutions) are brought together to protect the rare earth and permanent magnets in the EU The supply chain can have a certain degree of flexibility to support the continuous development of the current EU's important fields such as automobiles, aviation and energy.

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