(MENAFN) The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced on Tuesday that the US and Japan have signed a critical minerals agreement. The agreement aims to diversify supply chains and improve economic and trade relations between the two nations. This agreement builds on a 2019 trade agreement and seeks to strengthen and diversify critical minerals supply chains while promoting the adoption of electric vehicle battery technologies.
According to the USTR, the federal agency responsible for developing American trade policy, both nations have committed to facilitating trade, promoting fair competition, and market-oriented conditions for trade in critical minerals. They will also advance robust labor and environmental standards. In addition, they will cooperate in efforts to ensure secure, transparent, sustainable, and equitable critical minerals supply chains.
The critical minerals agreement also aims to promote cooperation in the non-imposition of export duties on critical minerals. The agreement includes domestic measures to address non-market policies and practices of other countries affecting trade in critical minerals. Furthermore, it includes practices regarding the review of investments in the minerals sector by foreign entities.
The International Energy Agency regards critical minerals such as copper, lithium, nickel, cobalt, and rare earth elements as essential components in many rapidly growing clean energy technologies, from wind turbines to electric vehicles. With the world's shift towards clean energy, the demand for these minerals has surged. The agreement between the US and Japan seeks to ensure that the supply chains for critical minerals remain secure and sustainable.
This agreement between the US and Japan is a significant step towards strengthening critical minerals supply chains. It aims to promote fair competition, secure supply chains, and advance labor and environmental standards. With this agreement, both nations can cooperate to ensure that the critical minerals sector remains sustainable, transparent, and equitable.
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