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25/06/2024
Mining News

Shenghe Resources expands global rare earth footprint: Acquires Tanzanian mineral sands projects

Shenghe Resources, a prominent Chinese rare earth company, is continuing its strategic global expansion by acquiring interests in various rare earth and mineral sands projects worldwide. In its latest move, Shenghe has agreed to purchase four Tanzanian mineral sands projects—Fungoni, Tajiri, Sudi, and Bagamoyo—from Australian critical mineral developer Strandline Resources for approximately $28.6 million. These projects contain valuable zirconium, titanium, and rare earth feedstocks, typically found in dunes, rivers, and coastal areas. China’s dominance in processing these raw materials underscores the strategic importance of this acquisition.

Shenghe’s expansion is not limited to Tanzania. The company has made significant investments in rare earth projects across different continents. Notably, Shenghe holds a stake in MP Materials, the operator of the Mountain Pass Mine in California, a critical source of rare earth elements in the United States. In 2023, Shenghe deepened its presence in Tanzania by acquiring a 19.9 percent stake in Peak Rare Earths, securing exclusive rights to the rare earth concentrate from its Ngualla project for seven years, along with substantial portions of the intermediate and final products.

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Furthermore, Shenghe’s acquisition of shares in Canadian rare earth miner Vital Metals has significant implications. This deal not only gives Shenghe access to Vital’s raw materials but also a 50 percent stake in the Wigu Hill rare earth project in Tanzania, with the option to increase this stake to 75 percent. This acquisition was seen as a blow to Western efforts to develop independent supply chains for critical minerals, highlighting Shenghe’s growing influence in the global rare earth market.

Overall, Shenghe Resources’ strategic acquisitions and investments in international rare earth projects reflect its ambition to secure a dominant position in the global supply chain, leveraging China’s extensive processing capabilities to maintain its competitive edge.

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