China has started stockpiling rare earths for strategic reserves Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported on Thursday. The news service cited the China Securities Journal, which said China has already started the purchase but did not say exactly when the initiative was launched.
The newspaper added that current low prices for rare earths had prompted the start of strategic buying and the reserves could be used to address future shortfalls, as well as help stabilize prices, which plunged in the first half of this year after companies sold stocks ahead of planned tax changes.
"Rare earths prices are now at low levels, so China definitely wants to build strategic reserves at this time," a Shanghai-based metals analyst, who declined to be named, told AFP.
"The other reason is that China hopes to control rare earth prices within a reasonable range, so as to encourage the long-term, healthy development of downstream industries."