Wednesday, October 10, 2012

International Market And Political Issues Likely To Diminish U.S. Ability To Obtain Strategic Minerals

Analytic Question:

What implications will international issues related to critical minerals have on U.S. national security in the next three to five years?

Key Findings:

Over the next three to five years, international issues including market and political conditions are likely to diminish the United States’ ability to obtain strategic minerals.

  • It is highly likely that the Chinese government will continue to bring attention to disputed regions like the Senkaku Islands, the Paracel Islands, and the Spratly Islands in the next 12 to 24 months.

  • It is likely that the national South African mining strikes will continue to affect global supply of minerals.

  • It is likely the United States will implement more regulations to diminish the quantity of central African conflict minerals being trafficked into the world market in the next three to five years.  

  • It is highly unlikely that the United States will exploit the Arctic region to reduce its dependency on other nations for strategic minerals over the next three to five years, despite abundant reserves in the region.

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