US urges ‘race to the top’ for critical minerals at Africa Indaba mining conference

By Julian Pecquet
Posted on Thursday, 12 May 2022 20:40

Panel members take part in a discussion during the African Mining Indaba 2022 conference, in Cape Town, South Africa, 11 May 2022. REUTERS/Shelley Christians

The Joe Biden administration told Africa’s leading mining executives and officials this week that they are poised to play a key role in the clean-energy revolution, but only if African officials clean up corruption and other problems in the sector.

In a 10 May keynote address to South Africa’s Mining Indaba – the world’s largest mining investment conference – Jose Fernandez, the under secretary of state for economic growth, energy and the environment, laid out his government’s energy policy priorities.

These include a “just and inclusive clean energy transition”; the creation of “robust, sustainable, and transparent supply chains for critical minerals”; and the promotion of transparent financial and regulatory environments and natural resources management.