Rare earth metals are a set of 17 chemical elements in the periodic table and include scandium, yttrium, cerium, and lanthanum. Small concentrations of these metals are a crucial ingredient in the manufacture of a wide range of high-technology products, including wind turbines, iPhones, industrial magnets, and the batteries used in hybrid cars. Extracting rare-earth metals can be a dirty process due to the toxic acids that are used during the refining process. As a consequence, strict environmental regulations have made it extremely expensive to extract and refine rare earth metals in many countries.
Environmental restrictions in countries such as Australia, Canada, and the United States have opened the way for China to become the world’s leading producer and exporter of rare earth metals. In 1990, China accounted for 27 percent of global rare earth production. By 2010, this figure had surged to 97 percent. In 2010, China sent shock waves through the high-tech manufacturing community when it imposed tight quotas on the exports of rare earth. In 2009, it exported around 50,000 tons of rare earth. The 2010 quota limited exports to 30,000 tons. The quota remained in effect for 2011 and was increased marginally to around 31,000 tons in 2012 and 2013.
The reason offered by China for imposing the export quota is that several of its own mining companies didn’t meet environmental standards and had to be shut down. The effect, however, was to dramatically increase prices for rare earth metals outside of China, putting foreign manufacturers at a cost disadvantage. Many observers quickly concluded that the imposition of export quotas was an attempt by China to give its domestic manufacturers a cost advantage and to encourage foreign manufacturers to move more production to China so that they could get access to lower-cost supplies of rare earth. As news magazine, The Economist concluded, “Slashing their exports of rare-earth metals has little to do with dwindling supplies or environmental concerns. It’s all about moving Chinese manufacturers up the supply chain, so they can sell valuable finished goods to the world rather than lowly raw materials.” In other words, China may have been using trade policy to support its industrial policy.
Developed countries cried foul, claiming that the export quotas violate China’s obligations under World Trade Organization rules. In July 2012, the WTO responded by launching its own investigation. Commenting on the investigation, a U.S. administration official said that the export quotas were part of a “deeply rooted industrial policy aimed at providing substantial competitive advantages for Chinese manufacturers at the expense of non-Chinese manufacturers.”
In the meantime, the world is not sitting still. In response to the high prices for rare earth metals, many companies have been redesigning their products to use substitute materials. Toyota, Renault, and Tesla, for example—all major automotive consumers of rare earth products—have stated that they plan to stop using parts that have rare earth elements in their cars. Governments have also tried to encourage private mining companies to expand their production of rare earth metals. By 2012, there were some 350 rare earth mine projects under development outside of China and India. An example, Molycorp, a U.S. mining company, is quickly boosting its rare earth production at a California mine. As a consequence of such actions, by early 2014, China’s share of rare earth output had slipped to 80 percent. This did not stop China from announcing quota limits in 2014 that seemed to be in line with those of 2013.
Sources: Chuin-Wei Yap, “China Revamps Rare-Earth Exports,” The Wall Street Journal, December 28, 2011, p. C3; “The Difference Engine: More Precious than Gold,” The Economist, September 17, 2010; “Of Metals and Market Forces,” The Economist, February 4, 2012; and J. T. Areddy and C. W. Yap, “China Raises Rare-Earth Export Quota,” The Wall Street Journal, August 22, 2012.
CASE DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
Which groups benefitted the most from China imposing an export quota on rare earth metals? Did it give the Chinese domestic manufacturers a significant cost advantage? Did it result in dramatically increased quality and environmental standards?Given that 97 percent of rare earth metal production is now done in China, an increase from 27 percent to 97 percent between 1990 and 2010, do you think countries such as Australia, Canada, and the United States should reconsider their environmental restrictions on the product of such metals?The restrictions imposed by China on rare earth metals has resulted in some companies (e.g., Toyota, Renault, Tesla) starting to look for alternatives. They plan to use parts that do not include rare earth metals. Is this a good solution?
Assignment Expectations – in the form of case discussion questions to be researched and submitted as follows:
Use a minimum of 3 references (there should be at least three in-text citations to correspond to the references) to defend your position.Use the 6th edition APA form and style and the provided writing template.The case analysis should be 3 to 5 pages in length and be accompanied by a MBA coverage
Madeleine Beth McCann brought into the world 12 May 2003 vanished on the night of 3 May 2007 from her bed in a vacation loft in Portugal, starting what one paper called “the most vigorously announced missing-individual case in present day history” Still right up ’til today nobody knows where she is or what truly befell her. The overall population have numerous hypotheses, for example, she was snatched”, yet the most mainstream hypothesis is that she was killed and the guardians concealed it. Was Madeleine stole? Madeleine was on vacation from the UK with her folks, Kate and Gerry McCann her twin kin and a gathering of family companions and their kids. She and the twins had been left snoozing at 20:30 in the ground-floor condo, while the McCanns companions ate in an eatery 55 meters away.The guardians kept an eye on the kids all through the night, until Madeleine’s mom found she was absent at 22:00. Presently despite the fact that this is what the guardians have said this announcement simply doesn’t make any sense, for instance Kate McCann said that when she discovered Madeleine was missing she left her other two youngsters in the condo proceed to caution her significant other at the café, This is the place numerous individuals think her story is imperfect if u had quite recently discovered your little girl was stole for what reason would u leave your other two kids home alone to go alert your better half? This is the thing that Gerry McCann said when examined concerning not having a sitter. “The children were sound sleeping and they were being checked consistently. We didn’t think we required a sitter. We are acceptable guardians and what we did felt impeccably sensible at that point.” One of the family’s neighbors at the time Pamela Isobel Fenn said in her observer explanation that she hear “one of the youngsters shouting out for around one hour and fifteen minutes” There has been numerous irregularities with the guardians and others’ story’s which make it difficult to accept that Madeleine was really stole. Was Madeleine killed and were her folks concealing it? Presently this hypothesis is unquestionably the most famous and what individuals assume the most honest there is overpowering proof to back up this hypothesis that Madeleine McCann was killed and the snatching story is a concealment. There are numerous reasons individuals accept this, for example, the absence of proof to demonstrate that she was snatched, there’s no authoritative proof that demonstrates Madeleine was captured and that is the reason individuals question it and a portion of the guardians activities when truly raise suspicion.It is accepted that Madeline was killed inside her home as Portuguese police utilized two sniffer hounds and took them to different areas around the region however The two mutts, one prepared to recognize human blood, the other the smell of dead bodies, were taken to various areas, yet just gave cautions inside the McCanns’ vacation condo. The dead body hound later gave another alarm signal while inside the Renault Scenic contract vehicle that the McCanns had leased 24 days after their girl disappeared. Madeleines DNA was found in the boot of their leased vehicle. Additionally it is accepted by numerous individuals that the McCanns discarded her body which is sponsored up by this Irish family’s explanation who were remaining close to the irish couple was affirmed to have seen a man conveying a 3–4 years of age young lady with light hair close to the sea shore at Rue da Escola Primaria. at around 10pm. Electronic Facial Identification Technique was utilized from the smiths depictions and the outcome was fundamentally the same as Mr. McCann’s face. Another motivation behind why general society accepted the guardians were engaged with was their trouble in the examination When Portuguese police chose to file the examination because of the resistance of the McCanns and their vacation companions, they had the chance to claim against the choice But they didn’t.>GET ANSWER Let’s block ads! (Why?)