China imposes export curbs on graphite

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Source: The post is based on the article “China imposes export curbs on graphite” published in “Financial Times” on 28th October 2023

Why in the News?

China has imposed export controls on graphite.

Why has China decided to impose an export curb on graphite?

Aim: To protect China’s national security and controlling supplies of critical minerals.

Restrictions: From December 1st, exporters in China will need to apply for permits to ship two types of graphite including high-purity, high-hardness and high-intensity synthetic graphite material and natural flake graphite and its products. 

Impact: China is the world’s largest graphite producer and exporter.It refines more than 90% of the world’s graphite into the material used in almost all Electric Vehicles(EV) batteries.

– Hence, the ban on graphite exports by China will lead to an increase in the scarcity of graphite, which in turn raises the cost of power batteries, leading to higher production costs for EVs.

What is Graphite?

TypeAllotrope of carbon
Properties1.Good conductor of electricity
2.​​High thermal stability and resistance to heat
UsesPencil “lead”
As a Lubricant
Electrodes in batteries and electrical devices
As a moderator in the nuclear furnace.
ReservesAccording to the United States Geological Survey, Turkey (27.3%) and Brazil (22.4%) together own half of the world’s natural graphite resources.China comes third at 16%,

UPSC Syllabus: Science and Technology

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