Jakarta, CNBC Indonesia – Malaysia will reportedly ban the export of ‘treasures’ in the form of rare earth metal (LTJ) mineral raw materials. This is an effort by Malaysia to avoid exploitation and loss of resources.
Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said, The government will support the development of the rare earths industry in Malaysia and the ban will ensure maximum profits. But he did not say when the proposed ban would come into effect.
“The rare earth metals industry is expected to contribute 9.5 billion ringgit (Rp. 30 trillion) to the country’s gross domestic product in 2025 and create nearly 7,000 jobs,” Anwar said in parliament, quoted by Reuters on Tuesday (12/9/2023).
“Detailed mapping of sources of rare earth elements and a comprehensive business model combining upstream, medium and downstream industries will be developed to maintain the rare earth value chain in the country.”
This decision was taken when Malaysia’s neighbor, Indonesia, took similar steps by implementing downstreaming. This is to ensure increased added value in the country.
Malaysia has only a handful of rare earth reserves in the world, with an estimated 30,000 metric tonnes. However, the decision was taken as the world seeks to diversify away from China, which uses it widely in the semiconductor chip, electric vehicle and military equipment industries.
In contrast to Malaysia, it turns out that Indonesia has abundant rare earth metal ‘treasure’ reserves. This super rare treasure is only scattered in a few locations with reserves of 1.5 billion tons.
This is based on data from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources (ESDM) as of 2015, quoted from the “Study of the Potential of Associated Minerals in Tin Mining” released by the Energy and Mineral Resources Data and Information Technology Center of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources in 2017.
This ‘treasure’ will be increasingly sought after by the world in the future because it is needed as raw material for advanced technology components, such as batteries, cell phones, computers, the electronics industry, renewable energy (EBT) based power plants, as well as weapons equipment or the defense industry and electric vehicles. .
Of the 17 rare earth metal elements, six of them are very necessary for the development of electric vehicles, namely lanthanum (La), cerium (Ce), neodymium (Nd) for batteries, praseodymium (Pr), neodymium (Nd), terbium ( Tb), and dysprosium (Dy) for generators and electric motors.
“The locations are spread across Sumatra Island (Bangka Belitung Islands Province), Kalimantan Island (especially West Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan), Sulawesi Island and Papua Island) with an estimated total potential of 1.5 billion tonnes,” said the executive summary of “Study of Ikutan Mineral Potential on Tin Mining” which was released by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources in 2017.
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