China Rare Earth Raw Material Import 2023

Imports of rare earth raw materials increased nearly 40% to 217,071 t, the import value increased 30% to US$2.23 billion.

2023 imports by item and percent change year-on-year:
  • Bastnaesite
     66,364 t, down 13.5%, value US$291.5 million, down 48%.
    Except for minor quantities from DR Congo, Laos and Malaysia, all of the bastnaesite imports are from MP Materials, USA (share 99.83%) - you can guess, that this affects MP substantially.
  • Monazite
     47,717 t, up 4%, value US$163.7 million, down 24%
    The three largest origins are Madagascar (55%), Nigeria (25%) and Thailand (13%).
  • Mixed rare earth oxides
     43,906 t, up 208%, value US$1.32 billion , up 92%.
    The largest origin is Myanmar (95%), followed by Malaysia (2.6%) and Laos (1.3%).
  • Mixed rare earth carbonate (MREC) 
    15,125 t, up 850%, value US$105.4 million, up 566%.
    The top 3 origins are Malaysia (55%), Laos (38%) and USA (3.2%).
  • Other compounds of rare earth metals
     43,960 t, up 155%, value US$354 million, up 53%.
    The largest origins are Myanmar (69%), Malaysia (16%) and Laos (12%).

2023 RE Imports by Quantity
2023 RE Imports by Value
Heavy Mineral Sands

China’s 2023 imports of heavy mineral sands (HMS) increased 17% to 5.5 mio t, value up 3% to US$2.9 billion. HMS contain some monazite. Our conservative estimate is, that China’’s 2023 HMS import quantity could contain ca. 40,000 t TREO.

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