Promoting Sustainable Development China Strives to Promote High Value Utilization of Rare Earth Resources

With the continuous deepening of the world scientific and technological revolution and industrial reform, the strategic value of rare earth will be further highlighted. During the "13th Five Year Plan" period, China's rare earth industry will not only face the competitive pressure from advanced countries in terms of patent technology, human capital and other aspects, but also face significant development opportunities brought by the development of strategic emerging industries and the transformation and upgrading of traditional industries.
From the perspective of application demand, the sustainable development strategy and Made in China 2025 have created new space for the development of the rare earth industry. The application prospect of rare earth materials is extremely broad. The market demand in rail transit, new energy vehicles, electronic information and other fields will further increase. The growth of the application of rare earth products will drive the industry to maintain medium to high speed development.
The Rare Earth Industry Development Plan (2016-2020) issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology pointed out that during the "13th Five Year Plan" period, China's rare earth industry should take the concept of innovation, coordination, green, openness and sharing as the main line of development, vigorously develop high-end rare earth applications, accelerate the transformation and upgrading of rare earth industry, promote the structural reform of the rare earth supply side, and promote the sustainable development of China's rare earth industry.
Focus on expanding medium and high-end applications
In the future, there will be many opportunities for the development of rare earth application industry. High end equipment manufacturing, new energy vehicles, new energy, high-performance medical equipment and other fields will significantly increase the consumption of rare earth permanent magnetic materials. With the improvement of environmental protection requirements, power plants and other industrial kiln exhaust gas denitration, vehicle exhaust purification, volatile organic compounds treatment and other fields can provide greater market space for rare earth catalytic materials. At the same time, rare earth hydrogen storage materials have broad application prospects in high-performance power cells, large-scale energy storage devices, thermal storage materials for solar power generation and other fields.
Based on the current situation of China's rare earth industry, the situation it faces, and the judgment of its future development trend, the Plan has clearly defined the construction of a new pattern of rare earth industry featuring rational development, orderly production, efficient utilization, scientific and technological innovation, and coordinated development as the main development direction of the "13th Five Year Plan". Under the premise of protecting rare earth strategic resources and continuing to reduce excess smelting and separation capacity, it will focus on the development of high-end rare earth functional materials and devices, Efforts should be made to expand the medium and high-end applications of rare earth functional materials, accelerate the transformation and upgrading of rare earth industry, and give play to the strategic value and supporting role of rare earth in transforming traditional industries, developing emerging industries, and national defense science and technology industry.
The Plan sets the average annual growth rate of industrial added value of the rare earth industry as 16.5% in 2020. The total mining volume will be controlled within 140000 tons in 2020. The output of major rare earth functional materials will increase by 15% annually. The emission intensity of major pollutants in the industry will decrease by 20%. The proportion of enterprises that meet the energy consumption standard will increase from 40% to 90%.
At present, the international market share of Chinese enterprises in high-end rare earth materials is about 25%, and other markets are mainly occupied by enterprises in advanced industrialized countries such as Europe, America and Japan. With reference to the industrial indicators of magnetic, catalytic, luminescent, hydrogen storage and other major rare earth functional materials and the opinions of experts in various fields, the Plan determines that the market share of high-end functional materials in the industry will reach more than 50% by 2020.
Optimize the structure and create a new value chain
In order to achieve the development goal of the 13th Five Year Plan, the Plan proposes to adjust and optimize the structure, support innovation system and capacity building, create a new value chain, and promote the green cycle development of rare earth industry.
Strengthen resource and ecological protection and promote sustainable development. Reasonably regulate the total amount of rare earth mining and production to ensure the sustainable development of the national economy; Strictly implement pollutant discharge standards and establish a green development mechanism; We will improve the rare earth product reserve system where state reserves and enterprise reserves complement each other; We will strengthen monitoring of the mining, production and circulation of medium and heavy rare earths, and resolutely crack down on violations of laws and regulations in the mining, production and circulation of rare earths.
We will support innovation systems and capacity building, and foster new drivers for the industry. Improve the innovation system, build a rare earth innovation center and service platform, strengthen the construction of intellectual property rights and standard system, break the barriers of overseas intellectual property rights, support the mechanism research of rare earth functional materials and the construction of gene library, and lead the future of new rare earth functional materials and key technologies for green preparation.
Promote intensive and high-end development, and adjust and optimize the structure. Continue to implement the big group strategy to realize the intensive production of rare earth mining, smelting separation and comprehensive utilization of resources; Promote the high value utilization of rare earth materials, improve the guarantee ability of key materials and parts, and cultivate the application of rare earth in key fields such as industrial robots, high-end CNC machine tools, rail transit, ocean engineering, etc.
Accelerate the green and intelligent transformation and build a circular economy. Improve the environmental protection level of enterprises and reduce energy and material consumption; Strengthen the comprehensive utilization of tailings and associated resources and improve the comprehensive utilization rate of resources; Accelerate intelligent transformation and build digital mines and intelligent factories; Expand the application of high abundance elements such as lanthanum, cerium and yttrium in industrial energy conservation, environmental protection and other fields, develop terbium dysprosium reduction and praseodymium neodymium substitution technologies, and develop low-cost rare earth permanent magnetic materials.
Make use of overseas resources to strengthen international cooperation. Support rare earth enterprises to "go global" and cooperate in the development of overseas resources and deep processing of products; Encourage enterprises to cooperate with overseas new material enterprises and technology research and development institutions to improve their international operation capability; We will promote the "going global" of Chinese standards and achieve the docking of domestic and international rare earth standards.
Create a new value chain to achieve mutual benefit and win-win results. Develop intensive processing near rare earth resources to promote poverty alleviation in old revolutionary base areas and poverty-stricken areas; Establish a new value chain, expand the application of rare earth in downstream areas such as energy conservation, environmental protection and household appliances, and realize the benefit sharing and coordinated development of upstream and downstream; We will develop and produce new dual-use rare earth materials and promote the sharing of military and civilian resources in the field of new rare earth materials.
According to the six key projects proposed in the Plan, namely, rare earth public service and innovation platform construction, rare earth basic research, high value utilization of rare earth, green upgrading and transformation of rare earth, deep integration of rare earth industry and rare earth industry, and green application of rare earth, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology will work with relevant departments to decompose and implement the tasks to key regions and key enterprises. In combination with about 400 key projects proposed by local competent industrial departments and key enterprises, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology will use various funding channels to select a number of projects with good industrialization foundation, broad market prospects and large-scale development to give centralized support to promote the development of the industry.