The Chamber of Minerals and Energy of WA (CME) welcomes today’s announcement of the Future Battery and Critical Minerals Industry Strategy’s Ministerial taskforce – which will explore local and global opportunities to grow the State’s critical minerals industry.
CME is one of 19 organisations represented on the taskforce, alongside fellow peak bodies the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia.
Five CME member companies are also on the taskforce: Albemarle Lithium, BHP Nickel West, Lynas Corporation, Northern Minerals and Pilbara Minerals.
CME Chief Executive Paul Everingham said the taskforce would help drive the development of a WA battery materials sector that is already a major player internationally. He said this is an opportunity to become an even more important part of the global supply chain.
“It’s widely publicised that WA has an abundance of materials used in battery production, including lithium, nickel, cobalt, vanadium and rare earths,” Mr Everingham said.
“As the demand for batteries – particularly those used in electric vehicles – continues to grow, so too will the demand increase for these minerals being produced in WA.
“This taskforce will play an important role by identifying opportunities that will further grow this emerging battery materials sector, creating significant job opportunities for Western Australians as the State’s recovery from the impacts of COVID-19 continues.
“It will also assess opportunities for WA to advance its place in the global supply chain by doing more downstream processing.”
CME and AMEC jointly released a report in August which forecasted a bright long-term future for the WA lithium sector on the back of expected global growth in demand for batteries used in electric vehicles and for energy storage systems needed for electricity grids.
CME is the peak resources sector representative body in Western Australia, with its member companies employing 86 per cent of the sector’s workforce.