11 Apr 2023 | Webinar
European Critical Raw Materials Regulation: Opportunities & Challenges for Stakeholders
The European Critical Raw Materials Regulation (ECRMR), announced by the EU in March 2023, aims to safeguard the green and digital transition by securing a stable and strategic supply of critical raw materials (CRMs). This webinar explored some of the opportunities and challenges linked to the EU’s new strategy for securing a supply of CRMs, both inside and outside the EU.
Time & Location
April 11, 2023
14:00 - 15:30 (CET)
About the event
In the wake of tumultuous years for global supply chains, the EU and many other countries are exploring options to secure resilient supply chains of critical raw materials (CRMs). The projected increasing global demand for CRMs highlights the need for circular supply chains that extract the highest value from virgin materials. Similarly, recent events in Europe, such as the Russian invasion of Ukraine, have reminded all nations of their precarious position in the global supply chain. It is in this context that in March 2023, the EU announced the European Critical Raw Materials Regulation (ECRMR) with the objective to safeguard the green and digital transition by securing a stable and strategic supply of CRMs. The ECRMR covers both strategic and rare raw materials, such as lithium - which will provide the foundation of the EU’s decarbonisation of transport. The policy focuses not only on the ready availability of these CRMs, but also access at a reasonable, stabilised price.
Yet, as the EU seeks to reduce its dependency of CRMs from a handful of countries with a large share of these natural resources, it still largely lacks developed infrastructure to source CRMs domestically either through the extraction of domestic supply or the use of secondary materials. Many CRMs are geographically concentrated outside of the EU. Therefore, the burden of the ECRMR lies with a recycling infrastructure that does not yet exist at the level required. The ECRMR lays out the goal of creating a network of raw materials agencies to enable the circular transition, but it is yet to be seen whether this will be successful.
This webinar explored some of the opportunities and challenges linked to the EU’s new strategy for securing a supply of CRMs, both inside and outside the EU. The ECRMR will have implications for the EU’s own internal environmental and circular economy-related objectives, and external impacts through shifts in demand for CRMs and trade flows. With similar policies being passed in the UK and the US (the Minerals Security Partnership), this webinar considered the ECRMR in an international context with new supply chain constraints, inconsistencies, and political demands. The key outcomes of this webinar were the identification of focus areas for policymakers and experts both from the EU and the international community to ensure the objectives of the ECRMR by accelerating the shift to a global circular economy without hindering global sustainable development goals.