The Metals Report: Alex, what is your overview of the rare earth element (REE) space?
Alex Knox: The highlight is that two large deposits of light rare earth elements (LREEs) are coming into production: Molycorp Inc.'s (MCP:NYSE) Mountain Pass and Lynas Corp.'s (LYC:ASX) Mt. Weld deposit. The considerable increase in LREE production has eliminated the need for any market niche for these types of deposits, at least for the short-term.
I see a dramatic need for development of heavy rare earth element (HREE) deposits in the western world, now that China's crackdown on illegal mining has presumably cut into its production of HREEs. A number of companies have reached pre-feasibility or preliminary economic assessment (PEA), and one already has a feasibility study. Overall, I believe this space offers the most potential growth and the most potential to add new deposits.
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