Russia prepares for large-scale rare earth metals production – by Eugene Gerden ( – October 8, 2015)

The government of Russia’s Murmansk region, a region, located in the northwestern part of Russia, has started a search of an investor for the development of the local Afrikandovsky field of rare-earth metals, according to Alexei Tyukavin, first deputy-governor of the region.

According to Murmansk regional government, successfull development of the field will allow to establish a full-scale production of titanium dioxide, as well as rare-earth metals.

Estimated volume of investments in the project is 8 billion rubles (US$200 million). Ore reserves of the field will ensure continous operation of a mine and processing complex, that will be built later during the next 100 years.

The tender is expected to be completed by the end October of the current year. The license for an investor will be granted for 25 years. In addition to rare earth metals, titanium, iron, tantalum, niobium and other metals.

The Russian government puts big hopes on the implementation of the project, considering the Murmansk region as a new center of Russia’s rare-earth metals production.

This was confirmed in the state program “Production of rare earth metals in Russia until 2020”, which was officially adopted by the government on the 5th of February of 2013.

In addition to Afrikandovsky field, as part of the state plans is the development of the Lovozersky field, Russia’s largest loparite field, which is also located in the Murmansk region and where the REM content of primarily of cerium group is estimated at about 1.12%.

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