Backing Australia's critical minerals sector

Joint media release with the Prime Minister, the Hon. Scott Morrison MP and Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the Hon Dan Tehan MP.

The Morrison Government will establish a $2 billion loan facility for Australian critical minerals projects to help secure the vital supplies of resources needed to drive the new energy economy and support the resources jobs of the future.

Australia has among the world’s largest recoverable reserves of the critical minerals used in advanced technologies, such as renewable energy, aerospace, defence, automotive and electric vehicles in particular, telecommunications and agri-tech.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the fund would effectively help fill finance gaps in critical minerals resources developments to get them off the ground.

“The commercial dimensions of the critical minerals market mean it is a difficult place to get established. We want to ensure that Australia’s resources producers do get established to they can link up with others in our supply chains in a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the Prime Minister said.

“Critical minerals are a strategic area for governments too because they are fundamental to the future energy economy.

“These projects also mean jobs in construction, infrastructure development and ongoing roles for the mining sector.”

Global demand for critical minerals needed for clean technology applications, like high powered magnets and batteries, are expected to grow exponentially over the coming decades.

Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Dan Tehan said Australia was well placed to become a reliable supplier of critical minerals to ensure supply in our region and support jobs and businesses in Australia.

“The global growth in demand for critical minerals to be used in the production of the latest technologies represents an incredible opportunity for Australia to utilise its natural resources and world-leading mining know how to become a leader in the extraction, processing and supply of critical minerals,” Minister Tehan said.

“Australian critical minerals will help other countries in the Indo-Pacific and beyond to accelerate their industrial reforms and transition to low-carbon technologies and that benefits Australia and our partners.”

Minister for Resources and Water Keith Pitt said the Coalition Government’s new $2 billion Critical Minerals Facility would ensure Australia remains at the forefront of emerging new opportunities in the global resources sector.

“Australia is already among the world’s top suppliers of some of the world’s most sought-after critical minerals and we know there is enormous potential through our untapped reserves,” Minister Pitt said.

“The lithium industry alone, which is essential to develop new battery technology, is forecast to be worth $400 billion globally by 2030 and initiatives like this will mean Australia is well placed to grab its share of the market.

“The new facility comes on top of other initiatives like the Government’s $225 Exploring for the Future Fund to support new resources exploration across the country.”

This investment in critical minerals will make Australia a world-leader in the mining and downstream processing of in-demand resources, supporting jobs and communities, particularly in regional Australia.

Australia is a leader in sustainable, ethical mining practices, and this investment will ensure we are providing the rare earths and other critical minerals that are essential to the supply chains of the new energy economy.

The $2 billion Critical Minerals Facility will be managed by Export Finance Australia and report to the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Dan Tehan. It will operate on the National Interest Account for 10 years or until finance equivalent to $2 billion has been provided. The new facility will be an important pillar of the Government’s overarching Critical Minerals Strategy being led by the Minister for Resources and Water Keith Pitt.

Media contacts:

Prime Minister's office 02 6277 7700

Minister Tehan's office 02 6277 7420

Minister Pitt's office 02 6277 7180