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Atlantic Council’s Africa Center Launches 3-Year Program to Advance Critical Minerals in Africa

The Atlantic Council’s Africa Center on Wednesday, February 7 launched an ambitious three-year program aimed at harnessing Africa’s significant potential in critical minerals.

At the moment, the continent boasts 30 percent of the world’s critical-mineral reserves. This initiative aims to solidify Africa’s position in twenty-first-century global supply chains.

More so, in key industries such as electric vehicles, lithium batteries, cellphones, medical scanners, and military hardware.

The cornerstone of this program is the establishment of a critical-minerals task force. The taskforce will comprise twelve members representing US, European, and African stakeholders.

Furthermore, it will have officials from the financial sector, development institutions, and government.

The task force’s inaugural meeting took place in Cape Town during the Mining Indaba event. The event which has always been touted as the premier mining gathering on the African continent.

The event normally sets the stage for collaborative efforts to drive progress in this vital sector.

The Atlantic Council will operate from the heart of policymaking in Washington, DC. The task force will convene regularly to delve into the role and potential of African minerals across various critical supply chains.

Some of the Key objectives include exploring strategies to enhance the inclusion of African nations and suppliers. Likewise, stimulating private sector engagement to catalyze sustainable growth and development.

Also Read: African Leaders Urge Mineral Value Addition at Mining Indaba 2024

Functions of the Atlantic Council Initiative

The critical-minerals program, generously supported by the Aiteo Group, aims to address the burgeoning demand for resources in African markets. More so, emphasizing the importance of investing in local value chains. The initiative seeks to unlock opportunities for job creation and economic empowerment on the continent.

At the same time, it seeks to chart a clear path for investors to address supply-chain gaps. The program aims to drive practical solutions rooted in robust policy frameworks and investment successes.

Furthermore, the task force will provide foreign investors with invaluable policy recommendations. On the other hand, it will offer insights into navigating the business environment in Africa.

Additionally, the initiative will serve as a platform for advocacy. It will  advocate for favorable policies and regulations encompassing incentives, property rights, local processing and value chains, regional cooperation and innovation, and technological environments. This multifaceted approach will be complemented by rigorous policy research and strategic analysis to inform decision-making and drive sustainable impact.

Also Read: Mining Indaba: World’s Largest Mining Event to Set Stage in South Africa

What the Initiative Means for Africa

In expressing her enthusiasm for the program, Rama Yade, senior director of the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center, emphasized Africa’s indispensable role in supplying critical minerals for the global economy.

 “Africa’s abundant mineral wealth presents a significant opportunity for economic growth and prosperity,” said Yade. “We are commItted to convening policymakers and stakeholders at the highest levels to chart a path forward for this vital industry on the African continent.”

The launch of the Atlantic Council’s critical-minerals program marks a pivotal moment in harnessing Africa’s resource potential to drive inclusive growth. Additionally, it improves sustainable development across the continent and beyond.

With collaboration and innovation at its core, this initiative promises to unlock new opportunities. It will also propel Africa to the forefront of the global critical minerals landscape.