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  • Published
    23rd Dec, 2023

Economy (GS-III)

China bans export of rare earth processing technologies

Recently, China, the world's top processor of rare earths, has banned the export of technology to extract and separate the strategic metals, as it overhauled a list of technologies deemed key to national security.

About the information:

  • It also banned the export of production technology for rare earth metals and alloy materials as well as technology to prepare some rare earth magnets.
  • The move comes as Europe and the United States scramble to wean themselves off rare earths from China, which accounts for 90% of global refined output.
  • China has mastered the solvent extraction process to refine the strategic minerals, which Western rare earth companies have struggled to deploy due to technical complexities and pollution concerns.

Solvent extraction process:

  • Solvent extraction is the process of removal of a solute component from a solid using a liquid solvent and is one of the modern extraction processes.
  • It is also called leaching or solid–liquid extraction.
  • In solvent extraction, two immiscible liquids are shaken together.

The more polar solutes dissolve preferentially in the more polar solvent, and the less polar solutes in the less polar solvent. In this experiment, the non-polar halogens preferentially dissolve in the non-polar mineral oil.

International Relations (GS-II)

Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS)

The 8th edition of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Conclave of Chiefs (CoC) was conducted by Royal Thai Navy at Bangkok.


  • During the Conclave of Chiefs, Thailand assumed the duties of Chair of IONS and Work Plan for next two years was finalised.
  • As a first, Flag designed by India was selected as the IONS Flag.
  • India also took over as the co-Chair of IONS Working Groups on Maritime Security and HADR for the forthcoming cycle.
  • Republic of Korea Navy was welcomed by the Conclave as the latest ‘Observer’, raising the collective strength of IONS to 34 members.
India is also scheduled to take over as the Chair of IONS (2025-27) during 9th CoC planned to be conducted in India in end 2025.

Species in News

Fimbristylis jaleeliana

Recently, the new species belongs to the family Cyperacea was Discovered in the lateritic hillocks of Kannur district.


  • Fimbristylis vahl is one of the largest genera within Cyperaceae.
  • The genus has 320 species globally, distributed in tropical and subtropical regions.
  • In India, the Fimbristylis genus is represented by 124 species.
  • Out of these, 97 species are found in the Western Ghats and along the west coast.

Habitat and Threats:

  • Fimbristylis jaleeliana thrives in lateritic grasslands.
  • Found at an elevation of 60 meters above sea level.
  • Faces a threat to existence due to habitat destruction caused by mining activities, especially on the lateritic plateau.
  • Populations are already fragmented.
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