OTTAWA, April 26, 2012 /CNW/ - In a report issued today: Canada's Rare Earth Deposits Can Offer A Substantial Competitive
Advantage, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce sheds light on the opportunity for
Canada to start punching above its weight in leveraging what is often
referred to as the "oil of the 21st century".
Rare earth elements are a series of 17 chemically similar metals that
have unique chemical, magnetic and fluorescent properties. They are
found in hybrid and electric cars, fluorescent lights, plasma screens,
portable computers, hand-held electronic devices, wind power generators
and optical and medical devices. Several rare earth elements are
essential constituents of automotive pollution control catalytic
converters and petroleum fluid cracking catalysts. They have a wide
variety of defence applications, some of which are critical to
countries' national security and are used in precision guided munitions
(missiles and smart bombs), lasers, satellite communications, jet
fighter engines and radar systems.
"Canada has 1.1 billion pounds of rare earths locked in black shale
deposits (the Alberta Black Shale Project) worth an estimated $206
billion. In addition, several other Canadian mines across the country
show great potential," said Perrin Beatty President and CEO of the
Canadian Chamber of Commerce. "We have been blessed with great geology
and we have a tremendous opportunity to turn our resource richness into
a significant competitive advantage," he added.
After embarking on a mission to become a world superpower in the
production of rare earth elements, China now controls 97.3 per cent of
the total world production. Over the past several years, it has been
raising export duties as well as reducing export quotas on some rare
earth elements, which has led the United States, Japan and the European
Union to file a Trade case at the World Trade Organization earlier this
year. The G20 is also very active in the debate.
"With the Japanese, Americans and Europeans now searching for ways to
counter's China's monopoly, Canada is in a very enviable position,"
added Beatty. A copy of the report can be found at www.chamber.ca .
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is the vital connection between
business and the federal government. It helps shape public policy and
decision-making to the benefit of businesses, communities and families
across Canada with a network of over 420 chambers of commerce and
boards of trade, representing 192,000 businesses of all sizes in all
sectors of the economy and in all regions. News and information are
available at www.chamber.ca or follow us on Twitter @CdnChamberofCom.
SOURCE CANADIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
For further information:
Émilie S. Potvin
Director, Public Affairs & Media Relations
Office: 613.238.4000 (231)