Geopolitical Risk Assessment of Countries with Rare Earth Element Deposits

Sotiris N. Kamenopoulos, Zach Agioutantis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Rare earth elements (REEs) are considered critical minerals for industrial and defense sectors. REEs are not as rare as the word “rare” portrays; yet, the exploitable and/or profitable deposits of REEs may be found only in certain geographical areas. The political and social conditions characterizing these areas may not always be in favor of mining operations. These conditions are imposing the need for extra consideration on the geopolitical constraints prior to any decision-making and before any mining project begins. This study assesses the risk related to mining projects for areas that feature REE deposits based on a geopolitical viewpoint. Probable ranking differences between the current assessment and a 2015 assessment are discussed. The comparative indicators used and the appraisal procedure applied in this comparison are based on a number of different geopolitical indicators. Several ranking changes occurred between 2015 and 2019.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-63
Number of pages13
JournalMining, Metallurgy and Exploration
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration Inc.


  • Geopolitics
  • Ranking
  • Rare earth elements
  • Risk
  • Sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Chemistry (all)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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