Independent online daily Free Malaysia Today (FMT) has issued an apology for articles it had published concerning the debate over the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant (LAMP) in Gebeng, Pahang.
“We refer to the articles previously published by us which claim that the Lynas plant may be unsafe. We apologise for these publications as such claims do not have a scientific basis.
The regulatory review of the Lynas plant has been thorough and diligent,” the newswires said in its portal yesterday.
According to a report by The Australian, the apology came after Lynas Corp Ltd announced in May that it had begun defamation proceedings in Malaysia against the “Save Malaysia Stop Lynas” group and some Malaysian media outlets.
Lynas executive chairman Nicholas Curtis said at the time the defamation case was launched the various groups had crossed the line between fact and defamation. The case against the Save Malaysia Stop Lynas group is to be heard today.
On May 7, it was reported that a joint report by Akademi Sains Malaysia and the National Professors’ Council titled “Rare Earth Industries: Moving Malaysia’s Green Economy Forward”, distributed at the International Symposium on Rare Earths 2012 yesterday said: “Though viewed as controversial, the rare earths business holds tremendous potential to the economy and society.”
International rare-earth consultant who is also the founding principal of Technology Metals Research, Jack Lifton, said there is great potential in the downstream industry which Malaysia could participate in as demand for rareearth elements (REE) increases with the advent of newer, smaller and faster technology.
In his presentation titled “The Supply and Demand of Rare Earth Now and in 30 Years”, Lifton said the presence of the LAMP producing some 25,000 tonnes of rare-earth oxide will also serve to attract high technology industries to invest and set up plants in Malaysia to take advantage of the ready supply of such REE.
“Malaysia could be a beacon or a backwater of the rare-earth industry. It’s up to you,” said Lifton.
Kuantan Member of Parliament Fuziah Salleh, who was invited to attend the symposium as part of the discussion panel, was not present.
A representative of Save Malaysia, Stop Lynas was also absent from the panel discussion.