Lynas encounters political hurdle in US rare earth contract

The future of Lynas Corporation’s contract for a United States-based
heavy rare earth separation facility is uncertain as the government
rethinks its decision.

Media reports in the United States’
political debate cited merits of a domestic supply, or supply from the
country’s allies and other sources.

Lynas stated it remained one
of the two companies selected for phase one of the project, however
understood that the United States Government’s progress on phase one was
on hold while addressing those political issues.

The United
States Department of Defense (DoD) had appointed local rare earths
processor Blue Line to complete planning and design work for the
facility with Lynas.

“We are committed to developing our heavy
rare earth separation facility and work is continuing on the plant
design and engineering,” Lynas stated in an ASX announcement.

“We continue to regard our heavy rare earth separation facility as an attractive strategic project.”

Lynas announced the contract award with the DoD in April, with the DoD said to be funding the phase one project.

also expressed its expectation for additional awards after completing
its phase one milestones, particularly for commercial scale production
and operation of the facility.

The company is progressing the
construction of a cracking and leaching plant for rare earth minerals in
Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

Lynas mines rare earth oxides at its Mt Weld operations in Western Australia.

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