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Australia’s competitive advantage gives it the edge in the global race for critical minerals: Minister

1st November 2023

     

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Australia can lead the world as it transitions to a clean energy future by producing the critical minerals required, whilst not sacrificing its existing competitive advantage as a traditional mining powerhouse, according to the Australian Minister for Resources the Hon. Madeleine King.

Addressing the 10th International Mining and Resources Conference, Minister King said mining underpins Australia’s prosperity and the abundance of critical minerals and rare earth deposits positioned it for global leadership in producing the materials to power the clean energy transition.

“Australia’s resources industry is a powerhouse of the economy. Mining underpins our standard of living, providing 75% of Australian exports and almost 15% of GDP. Australia's resources export earnings reaped a record $460 billion in the recent financial year. Taxes from our resources industry build roads and hospitals. Iron ore, gas and coal pay for our schools and defence forces.”

Minister King said 30 of the top 100 METS companies in the world are based in Australia, which is at the forefront of the sector’s most important developments, including remote operating vehicles, horizontal drilling, robotics and automation, airborne exploration technologies and mineral flotation. She said Australia is the world's largest leading producer of unprocessed lithium and produced most of the world's hard rock lithium, with exports forecast to reach $16 billion this year. It is the world's third largest cobalt exporter and the world's fourth largest exporter of rare earths, and ranked 7th in the world for economic resources of natural graphite. 

“The world's path to reaching Net Zero runs through the resources sector. The resources sector will provide for our future energy security, and it's clear that reaching Net Zero will require more mining, not less. I see it being nothing short of a national mission to ensure our critical minerals are mined to meet domestic and international demand, as well as being processed here in Australia.

“The entire world is seeking access to our critical minerals and rare earths, but at the same time, they are also seeking alternatives closer to home. Australia needs to embrace this opportunity, promoting our reputation as a reliable, stable and ethical supplier of resources.”

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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