Namibia: Export Ban on Unprocessed Raw Materials

by | 9. Jun 2023 - 12:08 | Politics

The South African country plans to export almost exclusively processed minerals in the future.

Namibia’s government has announced that unprocessed critical minerals may no longer be exported in the future. By doing so, the African country wants to benefit from the globally rising demand for raw materials such as rare earths, Reuters reports, citing the Namibian Ministry of Information. Further details were not disclosed, but Namibia is likely to be interested in building up capacities for the further processing of the extracted raw material in its own country and developing its know-how. Much more profit could be made from downstream products.

The resource-rich country owns deposits of lithium, cobalt, and rare earth metals. Rare earths elements are necessary to produce renewable energy and are used in solar or wind power plants. These minerals are steadily becoming more important as they play a key role in achieving global climate targets and energy transition. Germany also wants to cooperate with Namibia in the raw materials sector and source both green hydrogen and rare earths for its own energy and transport transition. According to German Economics Minister Robert Habeck, both sides would benefit from the partnership on equal terms, as the wind- and sun-rich Namibia could also use the expansion of climate-friendly energies locally for its own needs (we reported).

Photo: iStock/butenkow

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