G7 to Adopt Action Plan for Procurement of Key Minerals

Reuters file photo
Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura speaks in Tokyo on April 5.

The Group of Seven nations are expected to adopt an action plan for the stable supply of key minerals at a ministerial meeting in Sapporo this weekend, it has been learned.

An agreement on basic principles for carbon emission trading is also likely to be reached at the G7 Ministers’ Meeting on Climate, Energy and Environment on Saturday and Sunday.

Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura is expected to present the action plan to stabilize the supply chain of minerals integral for electric vehicle batteries and motors at the meeting.

G7 nations aim to use the action plan to strengthen economic security and support efforts toward the goal of achieving a decarbonized society.

The action plan will include measures to improve the forecast of long-term supply and demand of minerals such as cobalt, lithium and nickel; develop an efficient recycling system; and reduce mineral consumption through technological development.

Under the plan, G7 countries are also expected to provide more than ¥1 trillion in financial support for mining development.

As minerals in scrap electronic components and other products are often not recycled in developing countries, Japan will consider establishing an international framework for extracting and reusing such materials in cooperation with G7 members.

The government also plans to support the development of technologies to reduce mineral use without degrading product performance, and technologies to increase the amount of retrieved minerals through recycling.

Growth in demand for key minerals is likely to continue as such materials are used in wind turbines, batteries and other equipment essential for the realization of a decarbonized society. However, there is currently a dependence on countries such as China for the processing of such materials.