The first 6 months of operation for the Critical Minerals Facilitation Office have been full of activity. Our office has been working across the critical minerals sector with:
- Australian critical minerals projects
- government financing facilities
- international partners
Here are some highlights from our first 6 months.
Expanding Australia’s supply of critical minerals
Resources Ministers, led by our Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia, endorsed the Critical Minerals Work Plan in April. This collaborative plan is geared to expand the supply of critical minerals and capture growing markets.
To help expand supply and grow the sector we are:
- progressing the National Critical Minerals Development Roadmap with states and territories to identify prospective critical minerals hubs and precincts and develop a national ethical certification scheme
- partnering with Geoscience Australia to develop an online Critical Minerals Portal, to:
- increase the visibility of Australia’s critical mineral reserves
- provide a tool to assess economic and geological potential of selected critical minerals
We’ve also been working to support critical minerals research and projects, by:
- establishing the Advancing Research and Development for Critical Minerals Program, to:
- provide grant funding to our science agencies – CSIRO, ANSTO and Geoscience Australia – to boost their critical minerals R&D activities
- explore pathways to develop downstream processing in Australia
- collaborating with Austrade and Australian Government finance vehicles to connect critical minerals projects with finance and offtake agreements
- supporting critical minerals projects with regulatory approvals processes
Creating demand for Australia’s critical minerals
We’re working across government to lead Australia’s international critical minerals engagement. This is part of our efforts to create demand for critical minerals and build our global supply chains.
Our international efforts include:
- establishing a US-Australia Working Group to progress a joint Action Plan for Critical Minerals Cooperation
- working with India after signing a Memorandum of Understanding on critical minerals
- engaging with the EU and UK to identify opportunities to strengthen bilateral cooperation on critical minerals
- engaging with Japan to improve the resilience of critical minerals supply chains, including as part of the Australia-Japan Ministerial Economic Dialogue
- engaging with the Republic of Korea to build closer ties, following the Minister’s presentation to the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Korea
- a founding member of the Energy Resource Governance Initiative (ERGI)
- participating in international technical standards development and other multilateral forums
We’ll announce projects under the Advancing Research and Development for Critical Minerals Program soon.