Sweden finds rare earth deposits that could benefit Western consumers

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from The Washington Post,

Sweden has discovered what is billed as Europe’s biggest deposit of rare earth minerals — a crucial component of electronics and clean energy technology — giving a significant boost to the continent’s hunt for trade security.

LKAB, the Swedish state-owned mining company, announced Thursday that it found deposits of more than 1 million tons of rare earth metals in the country’s far northern Lapland province.

Products ranging from smartphones to electric vehicles and even military jets require these rare earth elements, which are not currently mined in Europe, the company said. Much of the world’s supply comes from China, which has more than 40 million tons in reserve, and has used the minerals as a geopolitical tool.

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