India and Australia become partners on mineral projects to develop supply chain

India and Australia worked on investing in critical mineral projects, including lithium, to build supply chains between the two countries and held bilateral talks on Friday.

Union Minister for Coal, Mines and Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi and Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Madeleine King announced the partnership and have identified five target projects (two lithium and three cobalt) to undergo detailed due diligence .

Ministers from the two countries have also agreed to deepen cooperation and expand their existing commitments to the India-Australia Critical Minerals Investment Partnership.

Investments under the partnership aim to build new supply chains underpinned by Australian-processed critical minerals, which will help India’s plans to reduce emissions from its power grid and become a global manufacturing hub, including for electric vehicles.

“The partnership between Indian company Khanij Bidesh India Ltd (KABIL) and CMO Australia has reached the first milestone in a short span of one year following the signing of the MoU between both organizations in March 2022,” said Joshi.

Minister King said India’s targets to cut carbon emissions and boost electric vehicle production offer great opportunities and prospects for Australia’s critical minerals sector, renewable exports and building stronger supply chains.

“Both nations have jointly committed to reducing emissions, ensuring energy security and diversifying the global markets for critical minerals and clean technologies,” the minister added.

Australia produces almost half of the world’s lithium, is the second largest producer of cobalt and the fourth largest producer of rare earth elements. With the expected increase in global demand for low-emission technologies over the next three decades, this partnership will go a long way towards securing mutually beneficial supply chains for critical minerals.

Union Minister Joshi visited Western Australia in 2022 and toured Tianqi Lithium Energy’s Kwinana lithium hydroxide refinery.

The Critical Minerals Partnership has continued to gain momentum following Minister Joshi’s visit to Western Australia.

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