SECRETARY POMPEO:  Thank you, and thank you all for joining us this morning.  I want to begin by welcoming Australia, Botswana, and Peru, founding partners of the Energy Resource Governance Initiative, along with the United States, Canada, and Chile.[1]  This initiative is yet more proof of how the Trump administration is tackling global challenges by building out partnerships with likeminded nations that focus on results that are real and tangible and which can make a difference.

We’re proud to bring this group together.  The work that we’re doing here is absolutely essential – it’s essential to ensuring secure and reliable energy supplies for every nation. 

Here’s why: As the global middle class expands, demand is increasing for mineral-intensive technologies.  Wind and solar require six times the amount of copper as coal-generated power.  A typical electric vehicle will need around four times more copper than a conventional gas-powered car. 

So the question is, from where and how will we get the minerals that we need?  Most are sourced from a small number of countries vulnerable to political instability, governance challenges, and malign influence from foreign actors. 

We want to ensure that these important mineral commodities remain free from international coercion and control.  We’d like to work with you to promote good mining sector governance and ensure that supply chains remain open and able to responsibly meet demand all around the world and for decades to come.

So today we’re all here.  We’ve assembled to discuss how we can do that by opening markets, leveling the playing field for competition, and sharing our knowledge, our best practices to support our allies and friends.

At the same time, we must also pursue new sources of these critical minerals.  The Trump administration is doing exactly that, inside our own borders.

We’re also working bilaterally to strengthen supply chains.  For example, President Trump and Prime Minister Trudeau recently agreed to a framework of cooperation on critical minerals.  Australia, too, has committed to supporting potential joint ventures in the United States to improve rare earth processing capacity. 

The U.S. also signed an MOU to assist Greenland to explore and responsibly develop their energy resources. 

By forming this initiative, the United States and our partner nations have taken a significant step toward a secure and prosperous energy future. 

I look forward to discussing the important work that lies ahead, and I hope other nations will join us in this effort.  And again, thank you all for you being here.  Thank you.

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[1] Canada and Chile are not founding partners at this time and were not able to attend the event.

U.S. Department of State

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