Critical minerals

We are growing our critical minerals sector to make Australia a world-leading producer of raw and processed critical minerals. Find investment opportunities, funding and initiatives.

We need critical minerals to make the critical technologies modern economies rely on. Like those underpinning renewable energy, medicine and national security.

Australia is home to some of the largest recoverable critical minerals deposits on earth. This includes high-quality cobalt, lithium, manganese, rare earth elements, tungsten and vanadium.

We are developing new industries to process more of these minerals in Australia. This creates jobs and economic benefits for all Australians and strengthens global supply chains.  

Our ethically sourced and high-quality critical minerals are helping the world modernise and decarbonise. This includes helping Australia achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Growing Australia’s critical minerals sector

The Australian Government is focussing on: 

  • attracting international investments and building international partnerships 
  • growing our critical minerals processing and manufacturing capabilities onshore 
  • getting more value from our natural resources and helping Australia become a renewable energy superpower 
  • creating Australian jobs and economic opportunities, including for our First Nations and regional communities.

Critical minerals and technologies

Critical minerals priorities align with many of Australia’s critical technology priorities. For example:

  • batteries and battery components
  • rare earth permanent magnets
  • catalysts for hydrogen production
  • semiconductors for micro-chips and solar photovoltaics (PV)
  • defence technologies.

Critical Minerals Office (CMO)

The CMO is the Australian Government's central coordination point for critical minerals. The CMO:

  • provides national policy and strategic advice
  • facilitates international partnerships
  • facilitates services to develop the sector.

Why you should invest in Australia’s critical minerals

We have a solid track record as a reliable critical mineral’s producer and exporter. We are experts in ethical extraction and world-leaders in developing responsible projects to high environmental, social and governance (ESG) credentials.

Major mining companies, junior explorers and financiers can benefit from Australia’s:

  • mature mining industry and deep expertise in resource extraction and processing
  • supportive government, policies, incentives and programs for the resources sector
  • pre-competitive geoscience information in identifying areas of resource potential
  • robust regulatory, construction, environmental and safety standards
  • stable business location with close ties to Asia’s growing markets.

Learn more about our critical minerals potential

Austrade’s Critical Minerals Prospectus 2022 showcases investment-ready projects across Australia. Austrade also has information about the mining equipment, technology and services sector and mining, oil and gas industry capabilities.

Geoscience Australia provides:

Our Resources and Energy Quarterly forecasts the value, volume and price of Australia’s major resources and energy commodity exports.

Find Australian Government funding and initiatives

We provide a range of grants, finance and support for critical minerals projects.

From our department

Currently closed

Critical Minerals Development Program (CMDP)

Critical Minerals Development Program grants support early and mid-stage critical minerals projects. The current round will provide up to $50 million over 3 years for competitive grants to support early and mid-stage critical minerals projects.

The Critical Minerals Development Program will:  

  • help grow Australia’s Critical Minerals industry
  • support Australia’s transition to net zero emissions
  • support economic development and jobs in regional communities.

Businesses and state or territory governments can apply for a co-funded grant of up to $30 million.

Grants can be used for feasibility studies, engineering design work, and building pilot or demonstration facilities amongst other activities.

Currently closed

Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Grants

Our CRC Grants support medium to long-term collaborative research for up to 10 years.

We help you partner with the research sector to solve industry-identified problems. 

The CRC Program supports the development of technologies, products and services that help reduce Australian industry problems. It aims to increase their:

  • competitiveness
  • productivity
  • sustainability.


National Reconstruction Fund (NRF)

The National Reconstruction Fund (NRF) will provide finance for projects that diversify and transform Australia’s industry and economy.

Priority areas 

The Australian Government established the National Reconstruction Fund Corporation (NRFC) to support 7 priority areas: 

  • value-add in resources
  • value-add in agriculture, forestry and fisheries 
  • transport
  • medical science
  • renewables and low emission technologies
  • defence capability 
  • enabling capabilities. 

The NRFC will provide finance in the form of debt, equity and guarantees to support Australian projects that drive high-value industry transformation. 

Major Projects Facilitation Agency

The Major Projects Facilitation Agency (MPFA) provides information and help with regulatory approvals for major projects in Australia. The MPFA is the Australian Government entry point for developers of projects over $20 million.

Research and Development Tax Incentive

The Research and Development (R&D) Tax Incentive is the government’s key mechanism to stimulate industry investment in R&D in Australia.

It is jointly administered by Industry Innovation and Science Australia (IISA) and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). 

From other government agencies

Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC)

The CEFC has a unique role to increase investment in Australia’s transition to lower emissions.

Export Finance Australia (EFA)

EFA support Australian businesses and projects with access to flexible finance.

Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive (JMEI)

The JMEI encourages investment in small minerals exploration companies that carry out greenfields mineral exploration in Australia.

Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF)

NAIF is a development financier for infrastructure projects in the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

Access the Australian Government’s critical minerals expertise

We provide evidence, expertise and advice to support critical minerals investors and project proponents.


Austrade is the government’s lead trade and investment facilitation agency. It supports the critical minerals sector by developing commercial partnerships to connect Australia with trade partners and target markets.

Australia Minerals

Australia Minerals is a collaboration of Australia's federal and state geoscience agencies that provides information and expertise to support mineral explorers realise investment opportunities.

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO)

The ANSTO Minerals team provides process development services, technical reviews and consulting services to clients in the mining and mineral processing industries.

Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)

CSIRO is one of the largest minerals research groups in the world. It partners with industry, government and the research sector to deliver breakthrough innovation across the minerals value chain.

Foreign Investment Review Board

The Foreign Investment Review Board provides information on foreign investment approval requirements for investing in Australia.

Geoscience Australia

Geoscience Australia maximises benefits from Australia’s wealth of mineral resources. It provides geoscience data, expertise and analysis, and stimulates mineral exploration and investment.

Latest news

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Net zero sector plans for industry, resources and the built environment

We are developing plans to help major sectors transition to a net zero economy. These will support the Australian Government’s Net Zero Plan.
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Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive 2019–20 and 2020–21 impact assessment: have your say

We’re seeking feedback on the performance and effectiveness of the Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive (JMEI) rounds of 2019-20 and 2020-21. Give your feedback until 9 August 2024.
Senator the Hon Don Farrell, Minister for Trade and Tourism and The Hon Madeleine King MP, Minister for Resources and Minister for Northern Australia sign the Memorandum for Understanding.
Critical Minerals Office

Australia and the European Union partner up on critical minerals

Australia and the EU’s new bilateral agreement will open up new opportunities to work together on critical minerals to accelerate the transition to net zero.
Photo of critical minerals

Investments to capitalise on Australia’s critical minerals and the global clean energy transition

As part of the 2024-25 May Budget, the Australian Government announced it will invest in a range of measures to secure our critical minerals processing industries.
Illustration shows map of Australia with hotspots.

Investments to map Australian resources that will power our future prosperity

As part of the 2024-25 May Budget, the Australian Government announced it will fund Geoscience Australia to accelerate the discovery of critical minerals, ground water and other resources…

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