The European Union and Ukraine have launched a strategic partnership on raw materials, with the aim of achieving a closer integration of raw materials and batteries value chains.
The strategic partnership with Ukraine will include activities along the entire value chain of both primary and secondary critical raw materials and batteries and in line with the objectives of the EU’s Critical Raw Materials Action Plan, it will help diversify, strengthen and secure both sides’ supply of critical raw materials, essential for achieving the green and digital transitions.
“I am honoured to launch, on behalf of the EU, this strategic partnership on raw materials and batteries with Ukraine,” said Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, responsible for Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight. “This new chapter in EU-Ukraine cooperation will not only strengthen our political bond but will also bring a wide range of opportunities for EU and Ukrainian industry – and ultimately help create and preserve local jobs in future-oriented areas, intrinsically linked to the ongoing green and digital transitions.”
It is the first tangible deliverable under the enhanced cooperation between the European Union and Ukraine in the areas of the European Green Deal and the Industrial Strategy.
More specifically, the strategic partnership will aim to develop three key areas of work. First, it focuses on the approximation of policy and regulatory mining frameworks, and notably the environmental, social and governance criteria across all activities.
Secondly, the partnership aims to better integrate critical raw materials and battery value chains to develop minerals resources in Ukraine in a sustainable and socially responsible way. To do so, it will engage the European Raw Materials Alliance and the European Battery Alliance as platforms for EU and Ukrainian stakeholders, including funding and investment organisations, to collaborate and develop joint venture projects and other business opportunities.
Finally, the partnership also encourages closer collaboration in research and innovation along with both raw materials and battery value chains using Horizon Europe.
“As we indeed move towards climate-neutral and digital societies, many key sectors – such as renewables, electronics, transport, aerospace and defence – will depend on a reliable and sustainable supply of raw materials at competitive costs,” said Mr Šefčovič. “Batteries, for their part, are a holy grail of electric mobility and renewable energy storage. Ukraine is well placed to become a strong player in critical raw materials and batteries – even poised to lead in these fields within the Eastern Partnership and the Energy Community.”
Additionally, the EU and Ukraine endorsed a first roadmap, a set of concrete activities and joint projects to advance the strategic partnership in the period 2021-2022. For example, it will help to develop a low carbon strategy and roadmap to decarbonise raw material mining, extraction and processing in Ukraine and strengthening sustainable and responsible sourcing and processing of raw materials and batteries by organising capacity building events for public administration and trainings for companies.