China’s control and coercion in critical minerals – by Ian Satchewell (Australian Strategic Policy Institute – June 7, 2024)

Markets for critical minerals are no longer shaping up to be the next components of the global economy to be dominated by China. They already are.

While Western nations were sleeping, China built vertically integrated supply chains for several critical minerals vital to the energy transition and high technology applications, including defence equipment.

Critical mineral supply chains are increasingly subject to Chinese government manipulation focussed on creating and maintaining monopolies and monopsonies. The scale and scope of this competition is presenting Australia and its partners with significant economic and security challenges.

The Australian government’s 2 June divestment order to China-linked entities with shareholdings in rare earths developer Northern Minerals is an example of what will be needed to counter China’s domination of critical minerals supply.

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