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Critical Cesium Supply Is Sold to China

Michael S. (Mickey) Fulp
0 Comments| July 11, 2019

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A Monday Morning Musing from Mickey the Mercenary Geologist

July 1, 2019

Little more than two months ago, I reported on the pending sale of America’s world monopoly in cesium, a Trump Administration-designated critical mineral, to China (Mercenary Musing, April 22, 2019).

The deal was completed on Friday, June 28 and reported in this news release: Cabot Corporation Completes Sale of Specialty Fluids Business.

That this sale was allowed to proceed is, quite frankly, beyond me.

Admittedly the transaction was monetarily small ($135 million and a potential $5 million in royalties), and was for a very minor metal with small, specialty markets. Most cesium demand comes from a niche use in the oil and gas business whereby cesium formate brines are added to drilling fluids to prevent blow-outs in high temperature, over-pressurized wells.

In early June, the Department of Commerce tabled a comprehensive multi-agency plan to alleviate America’s dependence on rogue foreign governments for our essential metals, minerals, and materials (A Federal Strategy to Ensure Secure and Reliable Supplies of Critical Minerals).

And now less than four weeks later, the Chinese are in control of the world’s mine-to-market supply chain of cesium, including proprietary technologies to manufacture a variety of cesium compounds.

The USGS tracks our demand for 77 mineral commodities on an annual basis; 51 of these are significantly or nearly completely supplied by three countries: China, Russia, and South Africa. Of the 35 minerals designated “critical” by the US in early 2018, we are beholden to China for 21 (with cesium recently added to the list), and Russia supplies an additional eight.

Frankly, I am disgusted by this recent development. I must conclude that the Trump executive branch is talking out of both sides of its mouth on the problem and its proposed solutions to America’s dangerous dependence on rogue nations to meet our mineral demands.

China and Russia have been America’s sworn enemies since becoming communist dictatorships in the early to mid-20th Century. Given their current fascist and anti-republican regimes with rulers empowered for life, both countries are destined to remain so for the foreseeable future.

It is imperative that we reduce our dependency for raw materials that drive our industrial base and economic health and that we start now.

Note that I will be speaking on this very subject at the upcoming Sprott Resource Investment Conference in Vancouver, July 30 to August 2. I hope you are able to attend.

Ciao for now,

Mickey Fulp
Mercenary Geologist

Click to enlarge

The Mercenary Geologist Michael S. “Mickey” Fulp is a Certified Professional Geologist with a B.Sc. in Earth Sciences with honor from the University of Tulsa, and M.Sc. in Geology from the University of New Mexico. Mickey has 35 years of experience as an exploration geologist and analyst searching for economic deposits of base and precious metals, industrial minerals, uranium, coal, oil and gas, and water in North and South America, Europe, and Asia.

Mickey worked for junior explorers, major mining companies, private companies, and investors as a consulting economic geologist for over 20 years, specializing in geological mapping, property evaluation, and business development. In addition to Mickey’s professional credentials and experience, he is high-altitude proficient, and is bilingual in English and Spanish. From 2003 to 2006, he made four outcrop ore discoveries in Peru, Nevada, Chile, and British Columbia.

Mickey is well-known and highly respected throughout the mining and exploration community due to his ongoing work as an analyst, writer, and speaker.


Disclaimer and Notice: I am not a certified financial analyst, broker, or professional qualified to offer investment advice. Nothing in any report, commentary, this website, interview, and other content constitutes or can be construed as investment advice or an offer or solicitation or advice to buy or sell stock or any asset or investment. All of my presentations should be considered an opinion and my opinions may be based upon information obtained from research of public documents and content available on the company’s website, regulatory filings, various stock exchange websites, and stock information services, through discussions with company representatives, agents, other professionals and investors, and field visits. My opinions are based upon information believed to be accurate and reliable, but my opinions are not guaranteed or implied to be so. The opinions presented may not be complete or correct; all information is provided without any legal responsibility or obligation to provide future updates. I accept no responsibility and no liability, whatsoever, for any direct, indirect, special, punitive, or consequential damages or loss arising from the use of my opinions or information. The information contained in a report, commentary, this website, interview, and other content is subject to change without notice, may become outdated, and may not be updated. A report, commentary, this website, interview, and other content reflect my personal opinions and views and nothing more. All content of this website is subject to international copyright protection and no part or portion of this website, report, commentary, interview, and other content may be altered, reproduced, copied, emailed, faxed, or distributed in any form without the express written consent of Michael S. (Mickey) Fulp, LLC.

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