NEW GROUP: China is setting up an industry association for rare earths companies to fend off trade complaints and help regulate the sector.
THE BACKDROP: The materials, mostly produced in China, are used in many high-tech applications. The U.S., the EU and Japan have accused China of unfair market manipulation.
ABOUT THE NEW GROUP: The government says the rare earths association includes 155 companies, including state-owned giants like Aluminum Corp. of China and China Minmetals Corp. It covers mining, smelting and processing aspects of the industry.