The Seven Year Niche

Until 2010, minerals such rare earths, lithium, cobalt and graphite were flying well below the radar of the mainstream mining industry. These speciality products, tailored for each customer, were being locked into long term supply contracts between buyer and seller and prices were stable.

The evolution of China and emergence of new technologies saw an unpredicted phase of price volatility for these minerals between 2010 and 2012. Price spikes and surges began, a global exploration rush ensued, and billions of dollars of investment followed.

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