A major commodities summit was recently held in Tokyo, with keynote speakers from industry leaders discussing the topic ‘Preparing for the Energy Transition’. Benedikt Sobotka represented Eurasian Resources Group,articulating the role of key metals in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The summit was hosted in partnership with the Financial Times and Nikkei. The broad focus of the summit revolved around the growing shift towards decarbonisation and the drive towards cleaner, greener sources of energy.
Key Metals in Industry 4.0
Sobotka, the CEO of Eurasian Resources Group, presented a keynote address on key materials in the metals industry, discussing the vision of ERG for a sustainable and responsible future with a focus on supply for the global battery industry. ERG sources and supplies a number of key materials for battery production, including cobalt and copper. Much of the cobalt sourced and supplied by ERG ultimately ends up within the automotive industry.
Electric Vehicle Production
ERG acknowledged the importance of the continuing prevalence of electric vehicle production within the automotive industry, but also recognised that there were still challenges to be addressed in terms of battery production. These challenges include adhering to regulations and norms both societal and environmental, curbing pollution, and ensuring the responsible sourcing of materials. At present, a large proportion (25%) of the cobalt supply globally comes from small-scale, artisanal mines, many of which use child labour.
Clean Cobalt Initiative
ERG is working to implement its Clean Cobalt Framework,starting from its reprocessing facility, Metalkol RTR, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The reprocessing facility works with historic copper and cobalt tailings and the Framework focuses on guaranteeing that cobalt is sustainably and responsibly sourced. When running at full capacity, the operation in the DRC will produce 24,000 tonnes of cobalt and 120,000 tonnes of copper per annum, which equates to enough materials to build over 3 million electric vehicles every year.
Operations in Kazakhstan
ERG is a leader in the social development and economic growth of Kazakhstan, representing more than a third of the nation’s metals and mining industry. It provides around one fifth of the electricity output of the country. ERG is also Central Asia’s largest railway operator. One of ERG’s production entities in Kazakhstan, Kazchrome, is one of the best established and largest quality ferroalloy suppliers globally. The Kazakhstan government owns 40% of Eurasian Resources Group.
Partnerships in Japan
ERG’s Chairman of the Board Dr Alexander Machkevitch thanked partners in Japan on behalf of the Group following the summit in Tokyo, stating that Japan is currently at the forefront when it comes to technological innovation. ERG supplies cobalt to many Japanese industry sectors, including makers of batteries and producers of battery materials, speciality steel producers, electronics firms, catalyst and chemical producers, and manufacturers of magnets. ERG also supplies large quantities of ferroalloys to Japan, including high-carbon ferrochrome.
About Eurasian Resources Group
Eurasian Resources Group is a world-leading producer of diversified natural resources, with a presence in 15 countries over four continents. ERG is a major employer, with more than 85,000 representatives across the globe. The integrated operations at ERG span the entire value chain, beginning with metal extraction and production, and continuing through processing, logistics and energy right through to marketing.
Connect with Eurasian Resources Group on LinkedIn for all of the latest news and updates about ERG.