Australian rare earths miner Lynas has signed a memorandum of understanding with US-based Blue Line to develop rare earth separation capacity in America.
The proposed joint venture would seek to establish a facility at the Blue Line site in Texas which would initially focus on heavy rare earth separation, but could also feature light rare earth separation.
Lynas CEO and managing director Amanda Lacaze said: “This is an exciting opportunity to develop local separation capacity for our customers in the United States and to close a critical supply chain gap for United States manufacturers.
“We already have an excellent commercial partnership with Blue Line serving key North American customers and we are looking forward to working closely with Blue Line over the next 12 months as we develop this joint venture (JV).”
The JV, which would be majority owned by Lynas, will become the only large-scale producer of separated medium and heavy rare earth products outside of China.
Blue Line president and CEO Jon Blumenthal said: “We have followed the impressive progress of Lynas as it has grown to become the largest producer of separated Light Rare Earth materials outside of China.
“We are looking forward to working with Lynas to provide a secure source of Rare Earth materials to both U.S. and international markets and using our technical expertise to produce raw materials for uses in green and other high-tech industries.”