According to the Chinese newspaper,China is all set to use rare earths to strike back in a trade war with the United States.It warned on Wednesday that rare earth exports to the US could be cut in retaliation for American measures for sparking fear among manufacturers.
President Xi Jinping’s visit to a rare earths plant last week had sparked speculation that China would use its dominant position as an exporter of rare earths to the United States as leverage in the trade war.
The bedrock of electrical manufacturing, rare earths are 17 elements that serve as key components in devices ranging from cameras to hi-tech smartphones ,flat-screen televisions and computers.It is also used in lightbulbs to guided missiles.
China dominates the global supply chain with 95 percent of the worlds supply of rare earth metals and Washington relies heavily on the Asian superpower to access the metals so much so that the commodities have not been subject to the tariff increases imposed by Donald Trump’s administration on Chinese goods.
While China has so far not explicitly said it would restrict rare earths sales to the United States, Chinese media has strongly implied this will happen.