Lynas bumps up against rare earth production cap, suspends Malaysian ops in Dec
Published: Thursday, 20 December 2018
Rare earth miner Lynas will halt operations at its refining plant in Malaysia until the New Year after local authorities in Kuantan, Pahang state, blocked its application to increase its output quota.
Lynas will shutter production after hitting a production cap
imposed by regulators, it said on November 27.
"As we indicated in the quarterly report on 25 October 2018,
one of the business as usual applications that we have lodged
is for an increase in the annual volume of lanthanide
concentrate that can be processed at Lynas Malaysia this
calendar year," the company said.
"As it is now late November, and we have not received that
approval, we are prudently planning for a temporary shutdown of
production in December," it added.
Lynas, the largest non-Chinese rare earth producer, said the
shutdown could hit production of rare earths neodymium and
praseodymium, which are used in batteries included in electric
vehicles, by around 400 tonnes.
This volume of material would be worth around A$16 million
($11.59 million), Lynas said.
The company has faced growing regulatory and political
opposition to its refining site. A Malaysian parliamentary
committee is compiling a report on the environmental effect of
Opposition to the plant is being led by Kuantan member of
parliament Fuziah Salleh. Lynas has previous called for
fairness in the investigation, accusing Salleh of being