The Lesser Known Metals Giant That Is Ruling The Global Market

published on: July 25, 2023 last updated on: November 30, 2023
Metals Giant That Is Ruling The Global Market

When the China-based Vital Materials Co. bought up a $600 million stockpile of mysterious critical minerals at the beginning of 2020, anyone barely even raised an eyebrow except for the niche kingdom of minor metals.

Fast-forward to a few years from 2020, the impact of a company that some people in the industry are not even aware of is a timely demonstration of the challenge to loosen China’s hold on what have now become key materials.

As Europe and the United States hurry to secure supplies to encourage a push towards green technology, China has already gotten control over multiple key elements that range from lithium and cobalt, that are used in batteries of vehicles that run on electricity, to a variety of rare-earth metals that are required for high power magnets inside wind turbines.

Vital Materials is ruling over the global market for a variety of these minor metals that are majorly featured in the list of critical metals as published by the European Union, the United

Metal Mining

States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.

The company has its hold over the biggest market shares of tellurium, selenium, bismuth and indium, that are required in solar power, pharmaceuticals, and flat-screen televisions, as mentioned by the people that are experts in the matter.

It is also placed in the top three for producing germanium and gallium, which are found in satellites, touchscreen phones, and high-end semiconductors.

Unlike the production of rare earth metals, where China already is the reigning supreme, the minor cousins are mostly the bi-products that are produced from the mining of industrial metals like zinc or copper and are generally then sent for refining to Chinese companies.

According to the European Union analysis, 94% of the world’s total gallium is refined by China, while germanium stays at 83%, providing it with a better grip over the supply that it has for cobalt and lithium, where up to 60% of the global production is accounted for.  

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upasana sarbajna

Upasana is a budding journalist who has a keen interest in writing. She considers writing as therapeutic and is most confident when she writes. She is passionate about music, movies and fashion. She writes in a way that connects with the audience in a personal level. She is optimistic, fun loving and opinionated.

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