EU should establish reserves of key raw materials, says Czech Presidency – EURACTIV.com

The European Commission should establish a strategic reserve system with key raw materials, said Czech Industry and Trade Minister Jozef Síkela.

The EU’s potential reserve system was discussed on Monday at a conference organized by the Czech EU Presidency Council.

Reserve systems for major mineral commodities have long been in place in the United States, Japan and South Korea. “So there are a lot of things to draw inspiration from,” Síkela said, as quoted by the Czech News Agency.

Commission Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič informed that the EC is currently preparing a legislative proposal on critical commodities.

The conference was joined by representatives of EU Member States. They also agreed that the EU’s gross strategic reserves should be built up in cooperation with neighboring countries, such as Albania, North Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Ukraine and countries in Africa North.

“We also talked today about the fact that the European Union needs a new generation of geological studies of its own territory. We have been living for several decades with the idea that EU territory has been extensively explored geologically, based on discoveries from the 1960s, 1970s and maybe even the 1980s,” Sikela said.

Šefčovič stressed that the COVID-19 pandemic and Russian aggression show that Europe should not be dependent on imports from third countries. “Our ambition must therefore be to stand tall in all strategic areas and we must achieve open strategic independence,” he said.

(Aneta Zachová | EURACTIV.cz)

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