Africa's mineral reserves are drawing interest from Asian and
Western states determined to secure supplies and counter wild
Strategic minerals are back in fashion and - along with oil
and gas - at the centre of geopolitical rivalries between industrial
economies in Asia and the West. New technologies have failed to
free modern economies from their dependence on base metals and
rare minerals: for example, fibre-optics are replacing copper
cables, but demand for the associated cobalt for superalloys used
in jet engines and gas turbines is growing fast. Competition is
increasing over price and secure supplies between Asia's super
economies - China, India and Japan - and
with Western economies.
Amid a slow recovery, Asian countries pursue Africa's strategic mineral resources
All modern economies face the challenge of securing access
to strategic minerals: cobalt, used to make superalloys; rare
earth metals like neodymium, which is used in the manufac...