Vietnam and Japan inaugurated a rare earth research and technology transfer center in Hanoi on Saturday, the Vietnam News Agency reported.
It said the center was established following an agreement on rare earth cooperation between the two nations signed by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Japanese counterpart Yoshihiko Noda last October.
Tran Viet Thanh, deputy minister of Science and Technology, said the center will conduct research on the processing of rare earth for use in the technology industry.
"The center will help build a sustainable, economically effective and environmentally-friendly rare earth industry, which generates revenues for localities with rare earth ores," he said.
Located in Dong Thap Commune, Dan Phuong District, the center will carry out extraction of rare earth from mined ore in Vietnam before shipping it to Japan.
The center was constructed by Vietnam and equipment was provided by Japan.
Vietnam has one of the world's largest rare earth reserves, found mainly in the north-west, according to the Department of Geology and Minerals.