The MEP Interest Group on Critical Raw Materials was created, at the request of MEP Prof. Carlos Zorrinho, to bring together like-minded MEPs from a cross-party basis to discuss the many pressing issues affecting Critical Raw Materials (CRMs).
Guaranteeing reliable and unhindered access to certain raw materials, known as CRMs, is a growing concern within the EU and across the globe, given the strategic importance of these materials for several key sectors such as automotive, electronics, aerospace and defence, transport and medical devices. Several of these materials play a pivotal role in the transition to a low-carbon, energy efficient and circular economy.
The accelerating technological innovation and rapid growth of emerging economies in the last decade has led to an increase in the use of CRMs in several applications with consequent increase of their demand. Securing the supply of CRMs has, therefore, become an important prerogative for those areas, such as the EU, deprived of sufficient natural reserves of these materials and, consequently, dependent on imports from third countries.
Over the last ten years, the EU has attempted to refine its approach towards CRMs in order to ensure unhindered EU access to these materials by foreseeing and tackling the risk of supply disruption through the creation of an EU CRM List. According to the European Commission, the EU CRM List should stimulate the production of CRMs and the launch of new mining activities in the EU as well as aid in the prioritisation of actions, negotiation of trade agreements and promotion of research and innovation on CRMs.
The current list identifies a total of 30 CRMs based on their economic importance to the EU and their supply risk.
In light of the above and of the growing concerns over the availability of these materials amidst the current global trade tensions, the MEP Interest Group aims to be an active platform gathering MEPs to debate, share and contribute to the current discussions on CRMs at the European Parliament level.
The CRM Interest group does not aim to create or support "political issues". The only political statement for the CRM Interest Group is to recognise the importance of the CRM's for European Circular Economy.