Tee co-founder of Technology Metals Research LLC, gives us the lay of the land in the rare earth sector. Many variables are shaping this developing market, and data makes the difference in determining viable investments.
The opportunities in the junior REE sector are significant. But the junior population is quite large - there are literally hundreds of stocks to choose from that want your dollars. There is also a steep learning curve and there are serious risks.
We can certainly debate and question specific projections. What's pretty clear though is that the figure of 278 kt for total rare earths in 2015 and beyond is referring to projected supply, not demand.
These ventures all have one thing in common, which is that most of the money required by all of them is required just to produce ore concentrates. The problem with this goal is that the ore concentrate stage is the lowest point in the value chain.
It is obvious from the vantage of the rare earths' sector in China, that China is simply racing ahead of the rest of the world in volume production, as well as development of state-of-the-art clean tech and green tech products.