On its second day, the 19th Annual General Meeting explored how to improve resilience in supply chains for energy transition minerals (ETMs), design tax policy for volatile ETMs, and build community resilience. Participants also discussed initiatives from the UN and other bodies on sustainable mining and ETM supply chains.
The first session of the day discussed experiences and pathways towards building and strengthening supply chains to support the energy transition. Clovis Freire, UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), stressed that supply chain resilience comes from diversification and discussed ways to diversity the chain. Jean-Marie Kanda Ntumba, Université de Lubumbashi, stressed the Democrat Republic of the Congo’s (DRC) desire to pursue a pan-African development vision for downstream development of critical minerals.
Tuul Tuvshinbayar, Mongolia Enhancing Resource Management through Institutional Transformation (MERIT) Project, discussed MERIT’s work supporting local small and medium-sized enterprises to supply the mining sector in Mongolia. Sjarah Soede, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands, discussed the strategic position of the Netherlands and the European Union (EU) in the critical mineral supply chain.
In a session on “legislating for uncertainty,” panelists discussed high volatility in ETMs due to structural changes and ways to design fiscal policy to improve government revenues while balancing agent incentives and rent extraction.
Rodrigo Cárcamo-Díaz, UNCTAD, cautioned there is no “one size fits all” taxation policy for EMTs, and ways to monitor and account for volatility in tax design. Andrew Viola, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), discussed the OECD’s toolkit for addressing the transfer pricing challenges faced when pricing minerals.
Aboubacar Fodé Keita, Guinea, discussed his country’s recent efforts to address the gap between the sharp increase in bauxite exports and the low level of income generated for the state. Mario Campa, LitioMx, shared some of Mexico’s challenges with lithium pricing, including the complexities due to variations in lithium grade and quality, and transfer pricing.
An afternoon session looked at examples of tools, such as community development agreements (CDAs), that ensure communities have a platform to voice their concerns, receive their fair share of benefits from mining, and help build community resilience.
Dione Macedo, Ministry of Mines and Energy, Brazil, shared two examples of informal CDAs in poor areas of Brazil. Glenn Nolan, Catalyste+, discussed what is required to build trust between Indigenous communities and mining companies and the types of agreements that can be used at different project stages. Roy Nicholson, Commissioner of Mines, Jamaica, shared how bauxite mining is benefitting local communities in his country, stressing the importance of corporate social responsibility.
The day’s final session, on transforming extractive industries for sustainable development, discussed new initiatives and research from international organizations on sustainable mining, including UN bodies. Elisa Tonda, UN Environment Programme (UNEP), reported on the UN Secretary-General’s initiative on extractive industries, and a UN working group on Harnessing Critical Energy Transition Minerals for Sustainable Development in Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs) project.
Phuntsho Namgyal, Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, Bhutan, said transforming sectors should go beyond efficiency and technology to the mindset – including how well-being, development, and community benefits are defined.
Sven Renner, World Bank, underscored the Bank’s support for resilient and inclusive supply chain enhancement, but cautioned that developing downstream activities like manufacturing may take decades rather than years.
Paul Otung, International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, discussed how countries in the Great Lakes Region cooperate with each other on critical ETMs to break away from commodity dependence.
Martine Rohn-Brossard, Co-Chair, Intergovernmental Regional Consultations on Minerals and Metals Management, and Federal Office for the Environment, Switzerland, shared key messages from the consultations and expectations for next steps at the upcoming UN Environment Assembly.
During the lunch hour an event was held on “Critical Minerals: National Priorities, Regional Initiatives, and Global Responsibilities.”