The Australian Government will take a concerted, targeted and proportionate approach to developing our critical minerals sector so it contributes to broader national security, economic security, emissions reduction, green trade, investment and industry growth outcomes. We will do this by working with partners to build diverse, resilient and sustainable global supply chains for priority technologies.
We will work across Government and with state, territory, national and international partners to create an enabling environment for our critical minerals sector. Over time, the industry will become self-sustaining with a reduced role for government.
We cannot spread our efforts too thin. We must focus policy support on the areas where it will have the greatest impact. To achieve this, we will identify minerals that are inputs to priority technologies that support Australia’s national interest, including where Australia can use its strengths to capture a larger share of growing global markets.
We will prioritise our actions and consider available policy levers to improve productivity and economic sustainability, while ensuring Australia’s critical minerals projects are attractive and competitive to investors.
We will do this in a way that:
- is proportionate to the size of our economy and global market demand
- considers our natural advantages and national interest
- is efficient, effective and fiscally responsible.
Prioritising policy support
Australia’s Critical Minerals List currently consists of 26 minerals that can be used in a wide array of technologies. While all 26 minerals represent potential economic opportunities for Australia, only some of them are inputs into priority technologies that support Australia’s national interest. This includes aligning with the Government’s security, energy, industrial and employment priorities, as well as securing benefits for communities and consumers. Priority technologies for critical minerals are identified by their:
- overall contribution to emissions reduction, or our security, energy and industrial priorities
- technology readiness
- contribution to Australia’s long-term comparative advantage and national interest
- capacity to underpin our strategic partnerships.
The initial priority technologies for critical minerals align with Australia’s Critical Technology Statement and include but are not limited to:
- batteries and battery components
- rare earth permanent magnets
- catalysts for hydrogen production
- semiconductors for micro-chips and solar PV
- defence technologies
- high-performance alloys and metals (for example, of magnesium, silicon, tungsten and titanium).
These technologies cover a range of fields included in the List of Critical Technologies in the National Interest, including advanced manufacturing and materials, and clean energy generation and storage.
The Government will analyse the value chain for each priority technology to identify where Australia is best positioned to capture market share. This analysis will also identify the critical mineral products and types of projects needed for these technologies.
The Government will prioritise support for critical minerals projects that underpin priority technologies and clearly contribute to the vision and objectives of this Strategy.
To clearly signal policy priorities for the sector, Australia’s Critical Minerals List will be published separately to the Critical Minerals Strategy. The Strategy sets out the Government’s broad and enduring policy direction, while the List can be updated in response to global strategic, technological, economic and policy changes.
- Establish a process to update Australia’s Critical Minerals List.
- The Australian Government will analyse the value chain for each priority technology. This will identify where we can be most competitive and prioritise policy support.