Minister Pralhad Joshi arrives in Australia to explore joint investment in critical minerals like lithium, cobalt
Critical minerals like lithium and cobalt are important in India's transition to clean energy sources
With Union Coal and Mines Minister Pralhad Joshi beginning a six-day visit to Australia on Sunday, India is looking to strengthen partnerships in the field of strategic critical minerals like lithium and cobalt that are important in the transition to clean energy sources.
On Monday, Joshi visited Tianqi Lithium processing facility, Kwinana accompanied by Australian Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Madeleine King. This lithium processing facility is Australia’s first fully-automated lithium hydroxide processing plant, he said in a tweet.
"Visited Tianqi Lithium processing facility, Kwinana accompanied by Australian Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, @MadeleineMHKing, humbled by her kind gesture.
This lithium processing facility is Australia’s first fully-automated lithium hydroxide processing plant," Joshi tweeted.
He also had detailed discussions with King on cooperation in strategic minerals especially lithium. He assured full cooperation of the Indian government in enhancing Australian presence in the Indian mining sector.
"Held a detailed deliberation with Australian Minister for Resources and Northern Australia @MadeleineMHKing on cooperation in strategic minerals especially lithium. Assured full cooperation of the Indian Govt in enhancing Australian presence in the Indian mining sector," Joshi said on Twitter.
This was the first meeting between Joshi and King since the election of the Anthony Albanese Government.
"Lithium hydroxide is a key component in electric vehicle batteries. During visit, discussed about exploring joint investment opportunities for utilizing the available advanced lithium processing facilities in Australia & enhancing cooperation in the field of strategic minerals," Joshi tweeted after the meeting.
"India is set to move a step closer to realising its ambition to develop secure, robust and commercially viable strategic critical minerals as part of its larger mission to transition to clean sources of energy," the Ministry of Mines had said on Sunday.
According to the ministry, the India-Australia Critical Minerals Investment Partnership envisages joint investment for viable lithium and cobalt projects in Australia, which is critical for India’s transition towards clean energy ambitions.
Besides King, a series of other meetings are also lined up with several Ministers and officials of Government of Australia and industry bodies, and associations in Australia.
Joshi will meet Minister Bill Johnston MLA, Minister for Mines and Petroleum, Energy, Corrective Services and Industrial Relations, A video conference meeting with Paul Toole, Deputy Premier, Minister for Regional New South Wales, and Minister for police is also scheduled.
During his visit, Joshi will aim to build on the MoU signed between Khanij Bidesh India Ltd. (KABIL), a joint venture of three CPSEs under the Ministry of Mines, and Critical Minerals Facilitation Office (CMFO), Government of Australia, the Ministry of Mines said. This seeks to strengthen bilateral trade relationship and lays the path to deliver on a shared ambition to develop secure, robust and commercially viable critical minerals supply chains.
The steps will complement India’s mineral security for E-mobility initiatives and other diversified sectors entailing usage of critical and strategic minerals, it added.