Clear Potential for Cooperation on Raw Materials Governance

Brussels, 29 October 2018 There is a clear potential and interest for further exploring areas of cooperation in raw materials governance. This was concluded at the H2020 FORAM project meeting in Brussels, where partners and EU representatives presented and discussed outcomes and next steps. As project leader Mathias Schluep (WRF) summarised, a prerequisite for stakeholder dialogues is a structured approach to identify and group existing initiatives, data availability and related stakeholders. International cooperation requires a participative and structured discussion. Dialogue needs to include stakeholders along the entire value chain of raw materials (primary and secondary) of all types (industry, government, IGO, NGO, civil society, academia) and all global regions. Creating accurate data and making these accessible in a structured and user-friendly way is a crucial support for international cooperation and knowledge exchange.

Bas de Leeuw (WRFA) presented a roadmap with potential cooperation models and next steps that the FORAM partners are considering taking after the formal closing of the project. It is foreseen that a small group of interested parties will work together. For example, in its 2019 event, to be held in Geneva in October, the World Resource Forum (WRF) is planning to devote a session on raw materials governance. This can also be an opportunity to involve and engage more non-European stakeholders into discussions.

raw materials
Susan van den Brink (UNU)

Susan van den Brink (UNU) reported on the global mapping of existing initiatives and data availability. In order to ensure common language and understanding the most important definitions were collected from different sources such as the Geological Surveys, UN definitions and dictionaries. To have a common understanding about the initiatives, 24 criteria were identified. These were identified and selected by literature review, online search and brainstorming with partners. With the support of project partners and a form which was available online on FORAM website and disseminated in different meetings and newsletters, 105 initiatives have been identified. These have been shown in an online interactive Geo-Map on project’s website. In addition to the initiatives, 452 individual stakeholders were mapped and assessed using the same criteria and categories. The majority of the existing databases were found to have a focus on primary raw materials. The topic of re-use is under-represented in this directory. A majority of critical raw materials is covered in the collected databases; there are gaps for gallium, indium, germanium and beryllium. The Joint Research Centre (EU) is going to integrate the ‘List of Initiatives’ in the Raw Material Information System (RMIS) and the ORAMA project adopted the Directory of Databases

Jelena Vidovic (EGS) presented the work on setting up a broad group of international experts and stakeholders, and having a dialogue with them on joint lessons, priorities and recommendations. The FORAM Stakeholder Network is composed of more than 170 experts covering the entire raw materials value. Five target groups for clustering of the stakeholders were identified: 1) Innovation, Security of Supply and Growth, 2) Resource Efficiency, Environmental and Social Aspects, 3) Policies, Legal and Financial Frameworks, 4) International Cooperation and Outreach, 5) Research, Capacity building and Education. Main discussion outcomes are that there is a need for a global knowledge base on primary and secondary raw materials, and for a global dialogue platform to achieve global raw materials governance. It is essential to implement responsible sourcing in all sectors of the value chain and to apply circular economy in raw materials value chains. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) need to be integrated into the mining sector.

raw materials
Shahrzad Manoochehri (WRFA)

Günter Tiess (MinPol) said that mineral policies vary significantly across countries and regions. The FORAM study confirms that global trade of minerals remains a key cornerstone of modern societies. Vitor Correia (EFG) mentioned that the vision of the project is not European centered and has a global focus. An international initiative should be authoritative, independent, supporting cooperative actions to uphold a sustainable, reliable and affordable global supply of mineral resources.

Shahrzad Manoochehri (WRFA) reported on the pilot event which was held on 27 June 2018 in Nancy, France back to back with World Materials Forum. The meeting was a mixture of plenary sessions, panel discussions and workshops which had a focus on knowledge management, policies and strategies and international cooperation.

At the meeting a video, introducing the FORAM goals, was launched, which will be available in English and Spanish language versions.

The formal closing meeting of the FORAM project presented the main outcomes and achievements of the project and revealed ideas and future plans. The meeting listened to presentations and statements from Jonas Hedberg: (EASME, EC), Vitor Correia and Isabel Fernandez (EFG), Slavko Solar and Krishnan Subramani Ramakrishnan (EGS), João Marques (GDW), Luís Lopes (LPRC), Margrethe Hofmann (MatSearch, ESM), Günter Tiess (MinPol), Irene Leischner (MinPol), Asja Mrotzek-Bloess (TUC), Clemens Mostert (Uni Kassel), Susan van den Brink (UNU), Henrike Sievers (BGR, EGS LTP), Nikola Gizdavec (HGI-CGS, EGS LTP), Boris Malyuk (GeoInform), Zoltán Horváth (MFGI, EGS LTP), Bas de Leeuw (WRFA), Shahrzad Manoochehri (WRFA) and Mathias Schluep (WRFA).

All information on the project can be found on the website of FORAM, partners will share regular updates on their own websites as well.