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1-min read

US-China Trade War Sparks Worries About Rare Earth Minerals Needed for Robotics, Drones, Electric Cars

China recently raised tariffs to 25 per cent on rare earth exports to the US and has threatened to halt exports altogether after the Trump administration raised tariffs on Chinese products and blacklisted telecommunications giant Huawei.

Associated Press

Updated:June 8, 2019, 9:36 PM IST
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US-China Trade War Sparks Worries About Rare Earth Minerals Needed for Robotics, Drones, Electric Cars
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Phoenix: Rising trade tensions have sparked worries about the 17 rare minerals needed for high-tech products such as robotics, drones and electric cars.

China recently raised tariffs to 25 per cent on rare earth exports to the US and has threatened to halt exports altogether after the Trump administration raised tariffs on Chinese products and blacklisted telecommunications giant Huawei.

With names like europium, scandium and ytterbium, the bulk of rare earth minerals are extracted from mines in China, where lower wages and lax environmental standards make production cheaper and easier.

But trade experts say no one should panic over China's threats to stop exporting the elements to the US.

There is a US rare minerals mine in California. Australia, Myanmar and Russia are also top producers of the somewhat obscure minerals.

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