Some workers told reporters that there are cameras and patrol vehicles inside the mining area. In recent years, there has been no phenomenon of rare earth being smuggled. However, on the hill 5 or 6 kilometers away from the mining area, there were still nearby villagers or small manufacturers Mining privately.
When talking about rare earth prices, Li Zhenhong, chairman of Baotou rare earth exchange, told Red Star news that the stock exchange had not formed a unified national trading market for rare earth products and lacked an objective price formation mechanism. The vast majority of domestic rare earth transactions were completed through negotiation between the two sides, so only they know the real transaction price. Li Zhenhong called for the establishment of a national rare earth exchange.
The worlds largest rare earth mine
No entry without permission
Bayan Obo mining area has the largest recoverable reserves and production in the world, and the rare earth reserves account for about half of the global rare earth production. On July 3, 1927, Ding Daoheng, a famous geologist, discovered a large iron ore containing rare earth elements, niobium, thorium and iron, and a mining city was born.
The whole Bayan Obo mining area covers an area of 328.64 square kilometers, with two sub district offices and four communities under its jurisdiction. The total population is 27600, including 22100 employees and family members of Baiyun iron mine, more than 80% of the total population in the region. There are Bayan Obo iron mining area, which is first permitted by the local government to be mined, and Barun mining area newly developed in recent years. All of them are confidential units. Therefore, it is forbidden to take photos and videos in the mining work and processing areas, let alone enter without permission.
According to the data, the mining area was seriously exploited more than ten years ago. In the special renovation around 2010, the surrounding 48 km is protected by the mineralization zone. At present, Baotou Steel (Group) company has the exclusive mining right of Bayan Obo mine.
However, the Xinhua Daily Telegraph recently reported that the rare earth in Bayan Obo was sold at the price of cabbage, exposing the chaos of illegal mining and unreasonable mining mode. On the afternoon of October 14, red star journalists visited Baiyunebo mining area.
Bayan Obo mine map, Xinhua News Agency
At the scene, the reporter found that the outer walls of the two mining areas under the banner of Baotou Iron and Steel Co. were equipped with ditches more than 10 kilometers long and about 2 meters wide, in order to prevent cars from being illegally exploited into the mining area. At the same time, there are gateposts outside the gate of the mining area to prohibit outsiders from entering. But in the Bayan Obo iron mining area next to the gate of the three or four hundred meters in the trench, the reporter saw a two meter wide access road can be directly into. Similarly, about 500 meters west of the gate post of Barun mining area, there is also a shortcut to directly reach the comprehensive office building of the mining area.
There are two meters deep trench around Baiyunebo iron mine
Baiyunebo Iron Mine Office Area
Barun mining branch of Baotou Steel Group
In this regard, the government staff of Baiyunebo mining area told reporters: even if we go in, we have to examine and approve at different levels. One person, one card, one truck and one photo. It is directly Baotou Steels own security department, which is sent from the city, and their security team is also rotated.
In the fence of the mining area around the gate post, the reporter did not find traces of illegal mining. Some workers introduced that private cars are not allowed to enter, and they cant get in without employee cards. However, they are subject to these paths when they put on their work and no one is blocking them.
A service provider in the Baren mining area revealed that more than a decade ago, the phenomenon of illegal excavation and tailing stolen around the plant has been banned. The Bayan Obo iron mine area and Barun mine area send ore to the concentrator to refine rare earth and iron ore respectively, while the surrounding small concentrators have long helped Baotou Steel to process and refine and collect processing fees. Today, there are dozens of kilometers around the mine where two meters deep trenches have been dug and monitored by cameras, so there are no rare earth smuggling incidents in the mining area.
Now even tailings cant be sold casually. According to the service provider, the tailings are also national strategic reserve resources. The ore mined by Barun mining is directly transported to Baoshan company, crushed and sorted, and then transported to Baotou Steel headquarters in the urban area of Baotou through pipelines. There are also some small concentrators around. Baotou Steel has a share in it. After sorting, they will also be transported to Baotou Steel Group. If there is smuggling of black ore , these small plants may be selected from tailings or steel slag and sold out.
Baotou City Natural Resources Bureau staff told Red Star News, usually if encountered this phenomenon can be reported to the Bureau of land and resources, there is a special person to deal with. The staff also said, the phenomenon of illegal excavation and mining has always existed, and it is not only Baotou. This kind of city with more mines has this kind of problem in the surrounding areas.
Domestic transactions are mostly completed through negotiation
The real transaction price is only known to the parties concerned
Rare earth is an important strategic resource and irreplaceable high-tech and military strategic element, known as industrial vitamin. China has more than 50% of the worlds rare earth reserves, accounting for 90% of the global market share.
Price index shown on the official website of Baotou rare earth products exchange
However, Chinas ability to intervene in rare earth prices is very weak, which makes the huge market share advantage can not be transformed into market power and commodity pricing advantage. In May 2011, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region approved the establishment of Baotou rare earth products exchange (hereinafter referred to as rare earth exchange), which is also the only trading place of rare earth products in China.
Baotou rare earth products exchange building
On October 16, red star journalists came to the rare earth exchange of Huanghe street in Baotou city. Although it is a weekday, the whole exchange is very cold and the electronic screen on the front of the hall is also closed. According to the staff, the electronic screen is only used about three times a week. The security guard told Red Star news that there were not many people who came to do trade, and the people who came in and out were basically internal personnel. According to reports, when the big screen is opened, the trading volume and prices of various rare earth products are rolling, showing the rare earth series index and price trend. But this is not the same as the listing price of rare earth enterprises in the north, and it is not the actual trading price of rare earth of each enterprise.
Internal situation of Baotou rare earth products exchange
Li Zhenhong, chairman of rare earth exchange, said in an interview with Red Star News, the problem we are facing is that there is no unified national trading market for rare earth products and there is no objective price formation mechanism. Most of the transactions of domestic rare earth enterprises are completed through negotiation between the two sides, and the real transaction price is only known to them.
The quoted prices of rare earth in northern China in October are: 10800 yuan / ton for lanthanum oxide, 10800 yuan / ton for cerium oxide, 376000 yuan / ton for praseodymium and neodymium oxide, and 395000 yuan / ton for neodymium oxide.
However, Baotou stock exchange is lack of influence in the whole country at present. As the only rare earth products exchange in China, the actual settlement of Baotou rare earth exchange in 2019 is only 1.33 billion yuan, and the settlement volume is only 3386 tons. Since its establishment, the trading volume of Baotou stock exchange has exceeded 8423 tons, but there are still a large number of rare earth trading in the market, which belongs to traditional barter.
Two years ago, Li Zhenhong estimated that the comprehensive production cost of producing a ton of rare earth in northern China was about 60000-70000 yuan, including 50% cerium oxide, 25% lanthanum oxide, 16% neodymium oxide and 5% praseodymium oxide. Plus other ingredients, the total is 100%. Based on this calculation, regardless of other rare earth elements accounting for 4%, the agreed market price of Baotou Rare Earth exceeds 64000 yuan per ton, while that of northern rare earth exceeds 82000 yuan, with a difference of more than 18000 yuan per ton.
In the terminal market, on October 20, the spot price of iron ore was 875 yuan / ton; the spot price of ferrosilicon was 5533 yuan / ton; the spot price of ferromanganese was 5866 yuan / ton. It is far from the price of rare earth products.
In addition, Li Zhenhong said that in addition to its immature trading mechanism, there are also factors such as low platform level, the contradiction between the front-end production quota system and the marketization of back-end transactions. In addition, Baotou rare earth exchange and other major trading platforms are all provincial trading platforms, so it is difficult to play its role in serving the rare earth industry. We are striving to upgrade Baotou stock exchange into a national platform.
It is reported that the export quota of rare earths was no longer restricted by Chinas Ministry of Commerce in early 2015. However, instead of giving up control, the Chinese government has shifted control from export restrictions to restrictions on exploitation sources, and controls the export of resources from the source of exploitation. In 2019, the national rare earth mining quota will be controlled at 132000 tons.
Cameras are installed in the surrounding 48 km mineralized zone
Illegal exploitation will be stopped and punished
Several regulatory departments in Baotou City responded to the chaos of illegal mining and black ore smuggling in Baiyunebo mining area.
As for the standard of punishment, the staff member said that the first thing is to confiscate the illegal gains, how much money should be paid back to the state by digging as much as possible, and then a certain proportion of punitive fines should be imposed. Our law enforcement is not as compulsory as the public security organs do, and we can only stop it on the spot.
On the afternoon of October 19, the natural resources supervision personnel of Baiyunebo mining area carried out patrol inspection on the surrounding areas. It is understood that in the 2010 rare earth special rectification, the surrounding 48 km is protected by the mineralized zone, and cameras are installed at the edge of the fence. Since 2012, law enforcement personnel have not found any illegal mining incidents. However, the regulator added, we are not worried about mining because there is no magnetite or rare earth ore in the periphery during law enforcement and patrol. If there is any poaching, it may be Damao Banner outside the Baiyun District, because these places are very close.
At the same time, the relevant person in charge of the Baiyunebo mining area government said that now the whole monitoring network is very perfect, even if the tailings are not wasted, all the useless are stored. The person in charge said that when the fourth Bayan Obo resource strategy seminar was held in mid September, experts visited the Baiyunebo mining area and believed that it was imperative to find out the resources of Bayan Obo. Accurate data on the reserves of iron, rare earth and niobium in Bayan Obo should be reported, and attention should be paid to the development and utilization of Bayan Obo resources.
As for the low price of rare earth and the lack of international pricing power for rare earth in China, Zhang Xiao, associate professor of the school of international economics and trade, Henan University of finance, economics and law, pointed out that the main reasons are that the industry concentration is too low, the competition is fierce, the industry integration is difficult, the futures market is not perfect, the strategic reserve system is not perfect, the policy is not perfect, and the industry association needs to be developed. As of March 31, 2020, the number of enterprises marked in the electronic map of Chinas rare earth industry has exceeded 2000. The direct consequence of low industrial concentration is that key enterprises have weak control over the industry as a whole and can not exert influence on international commodity pricing with one voice. Zhang Xiao suggested that the government should play a macro-control role, increase industry integration and improve scientific and technological innovation. We should establish and improve the rare earth reserve system, and promote fair trade and international exchange. Red Star News reporter Wu danruo, Zhao Minyu, Lu Yanfei from Baotou City, Inner Mongolia! Four ministries and commissions release a package of financial policy bonus: EF education responds to former foreign teachers involvement in making pornographic videos of young girls_ NB12679
As for the low price of rare earth and the lack of international pricing power for rare earth in China, Zhang Xiao, associate professor of the school of international economics and trade, Henan University of finance, economics and law, pointed out that the main reasons are that the industry concentration is too low, the competition is fierce, the industry integration is difficult, the futures market is not perfect, the strategic reserve system is not perfect, the policy is not perfect, and the industry association needs to be developed.
Zhang Xiao suggested that the government should play a macro-control role, increase industry integration and improve scientific and technological innovation. We should establish and improve the rare earth reserve system, and promote fair trade and international exchange.
Red Star News reporter Wu danruo, Zhao Minyu, Lu Yanfei, from Baotou City, Inner Mongolia