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Critical Mineral Strategy due soon - Minister

21st March 2023

By: Esmarie Iannucci

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Australasia


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PERTH ( – The federal government is hoping to deliver its new Critical Minerals Strategy in the first half of this year, Resources Minister Madeleine King told delegates at the first day of the Paydirt Battery Minerals Conference.

It is envisioned that the Strategy would focus on the government’s vision to grow the critical minerals sector and ensure that the benefits are captured by all Australians.

The Strategy will support growth in Australia’s minerals processing, domestic manufacturing and other industrial sectors, and would support emerging opportunities for the country’s regional and First Nations communities.

Furthermore, the Strategy would highlight the central role that critical minerals would play in helping Australia and international partners achieve their emissions reduction targets, and Australia’s ongoing commitment to the highest environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards.

“As the Prime Minister said recently, there is a national security imperative to mining more critical minerals and ensuring we process and manufacture products here. Global demand for critical minerals is rapidly increasing. This has been driven by factors such as global decarbonisation efforts, and by growth in electronic communication and clean energy technologies.

“The International Energy Agency projects the demand for many of the minerals used in electric vehicles and battery storage could grow by at least 30 times by 2040. Lithium demand, for instance, could grow over 40 times against current demands by 2040,” King told delegates in Perth.

“Australia's natural resources have long powered and enriched our nation. With critical minerals now providing an opportunity to write a new chapter and resources story. We're doing everything we can to support the sector,” the Minister said.

“This Strategy will ensure the plan we have in place best supports our priorities for the development of the sector. And the Critical Mineral Strategy has been developed with extensive consultation. So, these will be priorities we share and that the community can get behind. We boast some of the most robust environmental and labour practices in the world, meaning we produce perhaps the most sustainable resources products anywhere in the world. This provides a point of difference and a competitive edge for our resource producers. It is vital that Australia continues to uphold its reputation as a stable supplier of critical minerals. This means we must look to new sources of supply and establish robust, diverse supply chains.”

King pointed out that the government has announced significant new investments to help develop Australia's critical mineral sector, including A$100-million in grants to support early and mid-stage critical minerals projects.

“The Australian critical minerals research and development hub is bringing together a world leading research and development capabilities and looking how full critical minerals potential. The hub draws on the critical minerals expertise within Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Geoscience Australia and the Australia Nuclear Science and Technology Organization. There's also the Value-Adding and Resources Fund, part of the A$15-billion National Reconstruction Fund. It will ensure a greater share of the raw materials we extract are processed here, for example, high purity alumina for semiconductors and lithium for batteries. This combination of government grants investment in research capability and government loan funding is an important part of the government support for the development of the industry. Future support will be guided by new Australian Critical Mineral Strategy.”

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter


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