TOKYO -- Japan Rare Earths today announced they have decided to invest $9 million in setting up a manufacturing and servicing facility for high-end mining equipment in Honshu.
Japan Rare Earths new facility will cater to the company diversified customer base in the country's mining belt in the Honshu region.
Japan Rare Earths Chief Financial Officer, Mr. Brett Di Luca said "We expect a significant growth in mining activity in the Honshu region, with planned projects and expansion of mining activity in coal and iron ore and iron pyrite".
Japan Rare Earths Chief Operations Officer, Mr. Gustavo Gerbasi also said "We have set a target date of commissioning the first phase of our project by the end of 2014. Initially, we will set up a fabrication unit for mechanical structurals. In the second stage, we will start making the transmission equipment and finally in the third phase we take up the electrical parts".
Japan Rare Earths is a rare earth mining and recycling company based in Tokyo, Japan. Japan Rare Earths has a dual operational focus for the extraction of rare earth metals, developing leading edge technologies for both deep sea mineral extraction and recycling of rare earths from end of use applications.
Rare earth metals are fundamental to many modern technologies and play a prominent role in some of the most topical social trends; the advancement of digital technology and its miniaturization, reducing consumer energy consumption and pollution levels and enabling cleaner sources of energy production. They are also instrumental to modern advances in the aerospace and defense industries.
Japan Rare Earths have negotiated the development and extraction rights for a 3 square kilometer section of rare earth deposits discovered on the Pacific Ocean floor near the uninhabited Japanese island of Minamitorishima, which lies around 1,800 kilometers to the southeast of Tokyo. The deposit, which resides within Japan's exclusive economic zone, is estimated to contain 6.8 million tons of rare earths, enough to meet Japan's growing demand for more than 200 years.
Japan Rare Earths, building upon the experience and the well-developed technologies of the oil and gas industry, hope to begin meaningful extraction of rare earths from the site before the end of 2016.
Japan Rare Earths is also committed to the recovery of previously used rare earth metals and has applied existing and developed new proprietary processes to recycle rare earths from waste products such as energy saving light bulbs, magnets, computers, air conditioners and batteries.
According to recent Japan Rare Earths data, only around one percent of all rare earth metals are currently being recycled, despite a significant amount of their applications being suitable for recovery. Increasing recycling rates results in less dependence on foreign, self-interested suppliers and helps to reduce overall costs.