Australia and India strengthen critical minerals cooperation

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Australia and India have intensified their cooperation on the development of critical minerals projects and supply chains.

Following a meeting between Resources and Northern Australia Minister Madeleine King and her Indian counterpart, Minister Coal and Mines Shri Pralhad Joshi, Australia has agreed to commit A$5.8 million to the three-year India-Australia Critical Minerals Investment Partnership.

Minister King said Australia and India were “natural partners on critical minerals” with a shared commitment to lowering emissions and boosting the use of renewable energy.

“Australia is a trusted supplier of resources and energy to India, and we can build on the success of those established supply chains as Australia’s critical minerals sector grows,” Minister King said.

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“Australia has the resources to help India fulfil its ambitions to lower emissions and meet growing demand for critical minerals to help India’s space and defence industries, and the manufacture of solar panels, batteries and electric vehicles.

“Australia welcomes India’s strong interest and support for a bilateral partnership which will help advance critical minerals projects in Australia while diversifying global supply chains.”

Minister Joshi said: “We have recently signed an MoU between Khanij Bidesh India Ltd, and the Critical Minerals Facilitation Office (CMFO), Australia, which aims to ensure reliable supplies of Critical and Strategic Minerals to India.

“The MoU includes joint due diligence in Lithium and Cobalt mineral assets of Australia. Both CMFO and the Indian JV KABIL will jointly fund the due diligence process with an initial total amount of US$6 million.

“Once the due diligence is completed and potential projects are identified, we will explore investment opportunities through different methods as envisaged in the MoU.”

Australia possesses massive amounts of critical minerals, like lithium and cobalt, which are essential for clean energy technologies like batteries and electric cars, as well as for electronics like computers and mobile phones.

Image credit: Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources