Green Tech starts in the mine – as does an open strategic autonomy

We welcome the renewed attention to the competitiveness of the EU industry vis à vis its international competitors as a key enabler of the energy transition and a sustainable EU economy.

  • A Green Deal will only work if the industry prospers and has the means and positive vision to invest and operate;
  • Incentives are necessary for that – more than regulatory pressure. Thus, more wiggle room for Member States and possibilities to decarbonize and run decarbonized processes is highly appreciated.

We are also happy to see that for most parts, the Communication focuses on developing EU-own capacities to make the green and digital transition work – rather than relying on outsourcing activities to third countries. This is of particular interest when it comes to mining raw materials for green industrial transformation. Green Tech starts in the mine – as does an open strategic autonomy. 

 “To offset climate change and reduce our use of oil, coal and gas fossil energy, we need enormous volumes of metals and minerals. One part will be the trade but an important part will be how to pursue domestic mining within the EU,” says Jan Moström, President and CEO of LKAB and President of Euromines. At the moment Europe is producing only 3% and is using 30% of worldwide produced raw materials. Jan Moström highlighted: “Almost all metals and minerals are strategic”.

We sincerely hope this leads to re-thinking merging competitiveness with the green transition on a stable long-term foundation. To that end, we caution that beyond making subsidies available, a real industrial policy is needed, including a comprehensive approach to offset structural regulatory bottlenecks, ensure a fair level playing field and mitigate cost-drivers for the sustainability transition.

  1. Green Tech goes far beyond energy: A value chain approach is necessary – Clean Tech and Decarbonization starts with mining and producing strategic raw materials and so, a more open-minded approach to domestic mining is of utmost importance.
  2. Competitive transformation does not happen by adding more operational and regulatory costs – a re-balancing away from regulatory burdens towards incentives. 
  3. Long-term competitiveness is more than project investments – the underlying issue of investments not taking place requires a deeper look at operational costs.
  4. Regulatory and investment certainty requires more than monetary support – greater regulatory coherence must provide a productive and positive outlook for industrial investments. 

With these points addressed and included in the announced Critical Raw Materials Act, Euromines is optimistic that a new, comprehensive, substantial, and future-oriented industrial policy can emerge towards a real incentivization for greening industrial processes in a competitive manner.


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