China Restricts Graphite Export Permits: Navigating the Impact on Global Supply Chains

G6 Energy Corp
Public and Investor Relations
November 1, 2023
2 Min


In a surprising move, China has recently announced the implementation of export permits for certain graphite products, marking another strategic step in its efforts to control critical mineral supplies. As the world's leading graphite producer and exporter, China plays a pivotal role in the production of materials crucial for electric vehicle (EV) battery anodes. This decision has significant implications for the global manufacturing landscape, with potential repercussions for industries heavily reliant on graphite.


China's dominance in graphite production and refinement, accounting for over 90% of the world's supply, has raised concerns about the security and stability of the global supply chain. The move to require export permits comes amid heightened scrutiny of Chinese industrial practices by foreign governments, with the European Union considering tariffs on Chinese-made EVs and the U.S. expanding restrictions on semiconductor access.

Details of the Decision:

Effective from December 1, China will mandate exporters to obtain permits for two types of graphite: high-purity, high-hardness, and high-intensity synthetic graphite material, and natural flake graphite and its products. This decision follows similar restrictions imposed on chip-making metals, gallium, and germanium, since August 1. While the move is aimed at safeguarding national security, China's commerce ministry has clarified that it is not targeting any specific country.

Global Industry Response:

Industry experts and stakeholders express surprise at the timing and scope of China's decision. Kien Huynh, Chief Commercial Officer at Alkemy Capital Investments, notes that the move underscores China's determination to maintain control over critical minerals. Analysts highlight potential challenges for South Korean firms heavily reliant on Chinese graphite imports, as they may need to seek alternatives from countries like the United States or Australia.

International Reactions:

The international community is closely monitoring the situation, with Japan planning to inquire about the operational policies of the new measures, potentially taking steps to address any violations of World Trade Organization rules. Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden discussed critical minerals in negotiations with EU officials, indicating the broader implications of China's actions on the global stage.

Impact on the Graphite Market:

While it remains uncertain how the new measures will impact the graphite market in the short term, some experts believe that prices may experience an upward trajectory internationally. However, with natural flake graphite prices currently down due to declining demand from the EV sector, the full impact remains to be seen.


China's decision to implement export permits for graphite products adds a new layer of complexity to the evolving landscape of global supply chains. As industries grapple with uncertainties, particularly in the EV sector, stakeholders are closely watching developments, with a keen eye on potential alternatives and strategic shifts in the mineral supply chain. The international community awaits further insights into the long-term ramifications of this unexpected move by China.