Australia, US ink agreement on rare earths to tackle China’s dominance


Mr Canavan said the partnership would see Australia feed critical mineral-hungry countries such as the US.

“Growing global demand for critical minerals means there is huge scope for Australia to develop secure and stable supply chains to meet the growing demand for critical minerals in key economies such as the US,” he said.

“The US has a need for critical minerals and Australia’s abundant supplies makes us a reliable and secure international supplier of a wide range of those, including rare earth elements.”

The agreement follows on from an informal agreement between the agencies signed 12 months ago and will feed into the federal government’s critical minerals strategy released earlier this year.

West Australian rare earth miners such as Northern Minerals and Lynas Corporation, which runs the biggest rare earths mine outside of China, joined government delegations to the US to discuss critical mineral supply.

Chamber of Minerals and Energy WA chief executive Paul Everingham said the agreement could underpin the next wave of WA’s resources sector development.

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“This partnership has the potential to lead to the development of new rare earths mines in Western Australia and further trade between the two countries,” he said.

“It recognises that Australia, the US, and much of the western world, does not have reliable supplies of the key minerals used in the technologies that are likely to shape our world over the coming decades.”

Association of Mining and Exploration Companies chief executive Warren Pearce said the agreement would unlock greater geological knowledge of the two countries.



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