Rare Earth Elements (REE) are metals with chemical characteristics that make them essential to the production of electronics. The green energy transition will raise the demand for REES significantly, because non-renewable energy technologies need much less REEs than the renewable energy technologies that will replace them. Their extraction and manufacturing process is implicated in global power relations. This article uses World Systems Theory and Dependency Theory to analyze the Democratic Republic of Congo as an important source of REEs, from the colonial origins of the resource-extraction based economy to modern working conditions of miners. Additionally, it analyzes the role of China as well as the US, the EU and Japan in the global market.