Saudi Arabia, UK discuss need to develop minerals supply chains in green energy push

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Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources and Britain’s Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy agree that there is an urgent need to combat climate change and shift to green energy, the official Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.

Saudi Minister Bandar bin Ibrahim al-Khorayef and the UK’s Grant Shapps spoke during a panel discussion titled ‘Enhancing the mineral development in Africa and west and central Asia,’ held on the sidelines of the Future Minerals Forum in Riyadh earlier this week.

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The emerging mining region spanning from Africa to West and Central Asia must take swift action to meet the rising global demand for minerals, according to al-Khorayef.

He emphasized the UK’s crucial role in developing reliable supply chains for the Kingdom and the entire region. Al-Khorayef also highlighted the importance of international collaboration in achieving the global goal of transitioning to green energy.

He underscored the need for increased focus on developing minerals in the region to foster cohesive communities through unified efforts that attract investment and provide access to data and technology.

Al-Khorayef announced that Saudi Arabia is making strides in improving its value chains for gold, phosphate, and aluminum, and has made significant progress in building infrastructure for electric vehicles. He noted that the future of mining in Saudi Arabia is promising, with exploration revealing mineral reserves valued at around $1.3 trillion (SAR5 trillion), and that the participation from over 60 countries at the conference demonstrated the Kingdom’s position as a global hub in the mineral and mining industry.

The British minister also acknowledged the strong Saudi-British partnership in green energy and emphasized that Saudi Arabia is the ideal location to discuss the future of minerals.

The Future Minerals Forum, which kicked off in Riyadh on Tuesday, is expected to run until Thursday. It saw the attendance of over 200 speakers from the Kingdom and various countries discussing key issues in the minerals and mining industry at both the regional and global levels, has seen a significant turnout.

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