Chinese communists own the last U.S. rare earth mine and it has military implications that the defense department has no solution for at this time.
Molycorp Inc. was an American mining corporation headquartered in Greenwood Village, Colorado. The corporation, which was formerly traded on the New York Stock Exchange, owned the Mountain Pass rare earth mine in California.
It filed for bankruptcy in June 2015 after changing competitive circumstances, declining prices on output and a 2014 restructuring. It was purchased by its largest creditor Oaktree Capital Management and was reorganized as Neo Performance Materials.
The company’s principal asset was the Mountain Pass rare earth mine, which once supplied the majority of the world’s rare earth elements.
Because of the competition from China, the mine became unprofitable. In the reorganization process of Molycorp, the mine was separated from the company and scheduled to be sold in March 2017 at the auction in bankruptcy court, with a $40 million opening offer.
Molycorp additionally owns one of the few processing plants outside China—Molycorp Silmet—that it had purchased in Estonia in 2011.
In comes the Chinese. The Chinese communist government indirectly acquired it.
The rare-earth mining operations in Mountain Pass, Calif., the last remaining assets of bankrupt Molycorp Inc., were bought in June by a group that drew objections from rival bidders, who said the winner has ties to the Chinese government.
It gives them a complete corner of the market with military implications for the U.S..
In July, 2017, CEO of American Elements Corp., Michael Silver, met with then-chief strategist to the President, Steve Bannon, to convince him to nationalize the mine. It is the U.S.’s only mine of rare earth minerals that are used hybrid electric cars, iPhones and military hardware such as night-vision goggles and guided weapons.
China uses slave and indentured servant labor and no one can compete with them. Aside from the moral implications, it leaves Chinese communists as the only ones who can sell minerals for products.
“The staff understood the urgency of the matter,” Michael Silver, chief executive officer of closely held American Elements Corp., said in a phone interview after his White House meeting, which he said was also attended by presidential deputy assistant Sebastian Gorka and White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.
All gone of course.
Silver said the mine should become a national laboratory “dedicated to rebuilding America’s rare-earth mining industry so the world knows it is safe to build high-tech manufacturing plants in the US.”
The government could take it over by eminent domain.
China controls 97 percent of the global rare-earth mineral production and they are our enemies.
It has implications for the US military and the GAO found that the Defense Department lacked any comprehensive plan for how to deal with “potential supply disruptions.”
The U.S. was once the world’s largest producer of such metals but in recent decades has lost out to China, where the rare earth minerals are plentiful and companies are not burdened by environmental and labor regulation. By 1999, China cornered 90 percent of the market.
The U.S. seems satisfied with becoming a country reliant on the service industry. At some point that will be the end of us. Saying none of this manufacturing is coming back and we are resigned to being the world’s slaves is hardly an answer.
A buyout group led by U.S. investors and backed by China’s Shenghe Resources Holding Co. won approval in June by a bankruptcy court to buy the mine. Rival bidder Tom Clarke has called for the U.S. government to review the acquisition with an eye to Shenghe’s alleged ties to the Chinese government.
China is now using their control of the market to push more countries to China for their manufacturing.
Breitbart put an article up four days ago about it but no word on whether anyone cares.