China is to reduce production quotas of rare earths and will stop issuing exploring licenses for rare earths, tungsten and antimony until 30 June 2010, the Ministry of Land and Resources said in an document issued yesterday.

In an effort to boost prices, the quota for rare earths production has been reduced by 6 percent. However quotas for tungsten were increased 2.6 percent and antimony by 23 percent.

Many miners recently stopped operations when prices dropped sharply as a result of the global financial crisis. China's has over half of the world's deposits of rare earths, tungsten and antimony and over 80 percent of production. Late-former leader Deng Xiaoping once said: The Middle East has oil, China has rare earths.

Last week, China Non-Ferrous Metal Mining became the majority shareholder in Australian rare earths miner Lynus Corp (LYC). While, in March, East China Exploration bought a 25 percent stake in Australia's other big rare earths prodcuer, Arafura Resources (ARU).

Thursday Tianjin Benefo Tejing Electric Co. (SH:600468) added 3.29 percent. The company has a mining subsidiary in Ganzhou, Jiangxi Province where China's largest tungsten deposit is located.  Hunan Nonferrous Co. (HK:2626) climbed 0.64 percent. The company controls 40 percent of world's tungsten deposits.

Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Rare-Earth Hi-Tech Co. (SH:600111) advanced 1.16 percent. Its parent company has world's largest rare earths deposits. China Rare Earths Holdings (HK:0769) declined 2.63 percent.Chenzhou Mining Group Co. (SZ:002155), the world's second largest antimony producer, added 1.78 percent.

In Canada, shares in rare earth mineral explorer Avalon Rare Metals (TSX-V:AVL) climbed 1.5%, while North America's only tungsten producer, North American Tungsten (TSX-V:NTC) slipped 2%.

Published courtesy of Proactive Investors - www.proactiveinvestors.co.uk

Metatags: China rare earths, China's Ministry of Land and Resources, China Non-Ferrous Metal Mining, tungsten, antimony