Ifo sees “need to act on nine minerals”

The crises show how dangerous it is to depend on individual supplier countries. In Germany, this applies not only to gas, but also to important minerals.

Batteries, robotics, renewable energy: According to a study, Germany is dependent on imported raw materials for many key technologies, often from individual supplier countries such as China. “There is an urgent need for action for crisis-proof supply chains for nine critical minerals,” the head of the Ifo Center for Foreign Trade, Lisandra Flach, concluded Thursday from the study published by her research institute. economic.

These are cobalt, boron, silicon, graphite, magnesium, lithium, niobium, rare earths and titanium. “More sources of supply are needed to make supply chains more resilient,” said the expert. According to the study, supply chain disruptions are particularly problematic for the cited raw materials. The reason: alternative sources could only be developed in the long term.

This is a lesson from the recent supply emergencies in the wake of the corona pandemic and crisis such as the war in Ukraine. According to the information, China is one of the largest suppliers on the world market of seven of the nine particularly critical raw materials, in some cases in a dominant position on the market.

More resilient supply chains are needed

This speaks of a rapid strengthening of existing trade relations with other countries, including Thailand and Vietnam for rare earths, but also Argentina, Brazil, the United States and Australia for other critical raw materials. For most of the 23 critical commodities examined in the study, more resilient supply chain measures are needed, foreign trade expert Flach said.

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