The United States will not be able to hold a competitive advantage or protect its national security as long as China maintains its dominance in rare earths production, according to experts.
Washingon must also do a better job of educating professionals for careers in the mining sector, three experts told EpochTV’s “China Insider” program. The three sources were Chadwick Hagan, an economist; Ann Bridges, author of the book “Rare Mettle”; and Rich Trzupek, a chemist and environmental consultant.
Their call to action came after President Joe Biden’s recent remarks raising concerns about China’s control over a very large part of the global market for rare earth minerals, such as lithium. Speaking from the White House last month, Biden said that “we can’t build a future that’s made in America” if the United States remains dependent on China for the raw materials on which so many components of daily life run, from iPhones to military planes.
Hagan affirmed that rare earth minerals are, like energy, a “strategic industry” and acknowledged that a majority of the mining and exportation of substances like lithium takes place in China, though he also noted that China’s dominance of this market has eased slightly in recent years.
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