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EU leaders signal alarm over Chinese magnesium crunch

Posted On: 7 Dec 2021   |   Posted By: Politico

Fears are growing among European leaders that the EU's industrial recovery from the pandemic is about to be undercut by yet another supply shock: a shortage of Chinese magnesium, which is vital to sectors such as cars, planes and electronics.
More than 95 percent of Europe's magnesium comes from China but the country is slashing back output amid nationwide energy shortages. China is, by far , the world's biggest producer, meaning it would be hard for smaller producers such as Russia and Israel to step in and fill huge shortfalls.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš - revealingly, leaders from top car-making countries - raised the issue on Thursday during an EU leaders' summit, according to a diplomat familiar with the discussion.
“Merkel it's become too costly to produce it because of the high energy prices,” the diplomat said, adding that the outgoing chancellor also warned about the knock-on effect on car production in Europe.
Babiš was even more direct,...

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