EU to press China over rare earths supplies

BEIJING (AP) — A European Union envoy says he will press Chinese officials not to restrict exports of rare earths needed by high-tech industry.

The EU’s director of market access, Matthew Baldwin, was in Beijing for talks on trade issues and said he would bring up concerns about rare earths supplies.

China accounts for most rare earths production but has announced plans to limit exports to conserve supplies and curb environmental damage. Global manufacturers that need them to produce mobile phones and other goods were alarmed when Beijing blocked shipments to Japan last month amid a squabble over disputed islands.

Baldwin said European companies have expressed concern about China’s plans to reduce its export quotas.

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