European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations



European Commission: Action plan on critical raw materials published

11. Sep 2020

On 3 September, the European Commissin has published an action plan on critical raw materials in the communication "Critical Raw Materials Resilience: Charting a Path towards greater Security and Sustainability”. The action plans presents four main goals for the EU:

  • develop resilient value chains for EU industrial ecosystems; 
  • reduce dependency on primary critical raw materials through circular use of re-sources, sustainable products and innovation;
  • strengthen domestic sourcing of raw materials in the EU;
  • diversify sourcing from third countries and remove distortions to international trade, fully respecting the EU's international obligations.

To achieve these objectives, the plan outlines ten concrete actions, including the establishment in the near future of a European Raw Materials Alliance open to all relevant stakeholders, including research and technology organisations. The plan also highlights the importance of research and innovation.

Already from 2021 critical raw materials research and innovation is expected to be launched in the context of Horizon Europe in the areas of waste processing, advanced materials and substitution, as well as processes for exploitation and processing of critical raw materials to reduce environmental impacts.