Japan and the UK have announced their aim to make joint investments in critical minerals in Africa in an attempt to stabilize supply chains from the continent.
The two countries will also seek to cooperate in developing mines in African countries while developing a framework for discussing economic security at the ministerial level. Japan and the UK will acquire mining sites and develop refining facilities, partnering with mineral-rich African countries to diversify their supply sources.
Heavily reliant on China for critical minerals such as cobalt and nickel, Japan has sought to partner with various African nations and secure resources to back the East Asian country’s tech-based economy.
In August, Japan’s Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry, Yasutoshi Nishimura visited Namibia, Zambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Angola, and Madagascar to build an African supply chain of critical minerals.
Meanwhile, the UK signed an agreement with Zambia on clean energy and critical minerals following a visit by the European country’s Foreign Minister, James Cleverly, to the African nation in August this year. The agreement is poised to result in $2.7 billion in British private sector investment in Zambia’s mining, minerals, and renewable energy sectors, alongside $537 million in government-backed investments.
Furthermore, the UK and South Africa have agreed to hold regular ministerial discussions on critical mineral development and supply chains from Africa to Europe.