The European Commission on Thursday unveiled plans to create domestic supply chains for raw materials, including lithium, seen as critical to the bloc’s digital and green transition.

The EU’s Action Plan on Critical Raw Materials aims to reduce Europe’s dependency on third countries by strengthening domestic sourcing of raw materials in the EU and diversifying supply from both primary and secondary sources.

“A number of raw materials are essential for Europe to lead the green and digital transition and remain the world’s first industrial continent,” Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market, said in a statement.

“We cannot afford to rely entirely on third countries – for some rare earths even on just one country. By diversifying the supply from third countries and developing the EU’s own capacity for extraction, processing, recycling, refining and separation of rare earths, we can become more resilient and sustainable,” he added.

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