SRC Expects to Produce 400 Tonnes of Rare Earth Metals Per Year Beginning in 2025

April 15, 2024

This news release originally appeared on the Government of Saskatchewan website.

Today, the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) signed a five-year agreement in principle with Hung Thinh Group (HTG) from Vietnam to import rare earth carbonate to SRC's Rare Earth Processing Facility to produce rare earth metals. Under the agreement, HTG will supply SRC with up to 3,000 tonnes of rare earth carbonate per year for five years beginning in June 2025. 

"Working with the international community to secure this supply of critical minerals for SRC's Rare Earth Processing Facility marks another step forward in establishing a domestic rare earth element hub in Saskatchewan," Minister Responsible for SRC Jeremy Harrison said. "This agreement is a direct outcome of Saskatchewan's international engagement with Vietnam, supported by our trade and investment office in Ho Chi Minh City. During our 2022 mission to Vietnam, our team and I met directly with HTG to showcase the opportunities for collaboration with Saskatchewan on rare earth processing. This agreement means SRC's facility will have the resources essential for the production of rare earth metals in Saskatchewan for the next five years."

Securing this supply of rare earth carbonate will allow SRC's facility to process, separate and produce approximately 400 tonnes of rare earth metals per year. These rare earth metals are essential for modern technology including cellphones, electric vehicles, robotics and green technologies.

"The production of rare earth metals will develop and stimulate the rare earth industry in North America," SRC President and CEO Mike Crabtree said. "This agreement with HTG ensures SRC will be producing rare earth element products for sale in the international market until the end of this decade."

This SRC project is North America's first, fully integrated commercial demonstration Rare Earth Processing Facility. SRC has developed proprietary, state-of-the-art technology and know-how in rare earth mineral processing, solvent extraction and metal smelting. 

Since 2020, the Saskatchewan Government has invested $71 million into the facility which is expected to act as a catalyst to stimulate the resource sector in Saskatchewan and across Canada by providing the mid-stream supply chain needed to generate industry investment and growth. 

SRC is Canada's second largest research and technology organization with 1,600 clients in 22 countries around the world. With nearly 350 employees and $232 million in annual revenue, SRC helps clients solve technology problems, make improvements, increase productivity and develop new markets.

graphic with src news title