08 Sep, 2023

Critical Raw Materials Act boosts EU sovereignty

The Renew Europe Group welcomes the adoption by the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy of the report on Critical Raw Materials Act (CRMA). It aims to tackle the EU’s access to secure, diversified, affordable and sustainable supplies, enabling Europe to meet its climate and digital goals.

Given the current geopolitical context, it is crucial that the EU strengthens its resilience, reduces its dependencies on materials used for strategic technologies and thereby accelerates towards more European sovereignty and competitiveness.

Nicola Beer MEP (FDP, DE), Vice-President of the European Parliament and Rapporteur on the Critical Raw Materials Act, states: “The Industry Committee today laid the foundations for stable European sovereignty and competitiveness. The agreed report provides a clear blueprint for European security of supply, with a research and innovation boost offensive along the entire value chain. Instead of ideology-driven subsidy avalanches, it relies on fast and simple approval processes and the reduction of red tape.

"In response to geopolitical upheavals, it creates the preconditions for targeted economic incentives to private investors in the context of production and recycling in Europe. At the same time, it builds on the expansion of strategic partnerships with third countries at eye level. The foundation for Europe's course towards open, economic and geopolitical sovereignty has been laid.

"Now it is time to build solid pillars for Europe's sovereignty in Plenary and in the upcoming negotiations with the Council and the Commission.”

The endorsed report places circularity within the single market, innovation and trade flows between reliable partners at the forefront of the EU strategy. In this regard, Renew Europe advocates for addressing supply risks by strengthening and diversifying value chains with strategic trade alliances based on mutual benefits.

The rapporteur also calls for investment in innovation and research to boost the development of sustainable alternative materials and production methods on European soil, and furthermore to investigate the possible recovery of CRM from extractive waste.

Moreover, as staunch supporter of competitiveness, Nicola Beer and her Renew Europe colleagues successfully pushed for a relief of the bureaucratic burden on companies and SMEs by reduced reporting, easier access to finance and shorter approval procedures for strategic critical raw materials projects.

Finally, Member States and European institutions must put in place the right incentives to ensure that enough assets, especially private ones, are mobilised for massive investments needed in the sector.

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