Where to Find

Key facts

  • Canada hosts some of the most advanced REEs exploration projects in the world.
  • China is the world’s largest producer of REEs, accounting for close to 90% of global annual production, estimated at 135,000 tonnes.

Canada-based advanced REEs exploration projects containing significant concentrations (> 20%) of the “heavy” REEs, 2017

Projects* Location Expected refined REEs
production (tonnes/year)
Targeted production start year Portion that are
heavy REEs (%)
Buckton, DNI Metals Alberta Unspecified >2020 24
Foxtrot, Search Minerals Newfoundland and Labrador 10,000 >2020 21
Nechalacho, Avalon Northwest Territories 10,000 >2020 28
Kipawa, Matamec Quebec 6,000 >2020 36
Strange Lake, Quest Quebec 12,500 >2020 47
Grand-Vallée, Orbite Aluminae Quebec 1,000 >2020 20

International context

China is the world’s largest producer of REEs, accounting for nearly 90% of global annual production, estimated at 135,000 tonnes. The remaining 10% is shared among four other countries: Australia, Myanmar, Russia and Malaysia. China remains virtually the only producer of the valued heavy REEs.

World production of REEs, by country, 2017

Ranking Country Thousand tonnes Percentage of total
1 China 116.9 86.6%
2 Australia 13.4 9.9%
3 Myanmar 2.3 1.7%
4 Russia 2.2 1.6%
5 Malaysia 0.3 0.2%
Total 135.0 100.0%

Source: Natural Resources Canada
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