George Bennett, the new chief executive of Rainbow Rare Earths, is aiming for a near 20-fold production boost at Africa’s only active rare earths mine that would make it the second-largest outside China.
Mr Bennett, a South African who was appointed to the London-listed company this month, said he wanted to expand production at the Burundi site to meet rising demand for the metals from electric cars and renewable energy.
Rare earths, 17 chemical elements that are essential to electronics and defence technologies, have come under greater scrutiny this year after China said in May it could ban their export in retaliation against trade tariffs launched by US president Donald Trump.
Rainbow Rare Earths Ltd (LON:RBW) is a mining company focussed on production from, and expansion of, the high grade Gakara Rare Earth Project in Burundi, East Africa. With in-situ grades in the range of 47-67% Total Rare Earth Oxide (TREO), Gakara is one of the world’s richest rare earth deposits.