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QLD critical minerals fund to boost battery supply chain

lithium processing

Applications are now open for the Queensland Government’s newest fund that aims to accelerate the growth of the state’s emerging critical minerals, battery technology and advanced material opportunities.

The Queensland Critical Minerals and Battery Technology Fund is aimed at enhancing the extraction and processing of critical minerals.

It also aims to accelerate the development of battery technologies and the production of precursor or advanced materials to support Queensland jobs and economic growth.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state has a clear vision to maximise the momentous opportunities that come with a clean energy future, as outlined in the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan.

“Our state’s abundant reserves of vanadium, cobalt, copper and rare earth elements are the key to accelerating the development of clean energy technologies like solar panels, battery storage and electric vehicles,” she said.

“More than just digging these out of the ground, Queensland is in the enviable position to grow our capabilities right through the supply chain from pit to product as global demand skyrockets.

“In the electric vehicle battery market alone, annual global investment is predicted to surge in excess of $550 billion by 2030 in order to meet emissions targets.

“This fund will ensure that it’s cobalt and nickel – extracted and processed in Queensland by Queenslanders – that is powering the clean energy future ahead.”

Queensland Treasurer and Trade and Investment Minister Cameron Dick said growing global demand creates a significant opportunity for Queensland’s critical minerals, battery technologies and advanced materials.

“However, we must ensure that local projects are production-ready, commercially viable and globally competitive,” he said.

“The Queensland Critical Minerals and Battery Technology Fund’s primary goal is to position our state at the front of the queue with the capacity and capability to meet global demand for decarbonisation.

“It supports the implementation of our recently released New-Industry Development Strategy and Queensland’s Battery Industry Strategy that is under development.

“The Queensland Critical Minerals and Battery Technology Fund builds on these commitments and draws on our strength in critical minerals coupled with local innovation and research capability to cement Queensland’s place in the global clean energy technology supply chain.”

Managed through Queensland Investment Corporation, the $100 million Queensland Critical Minerals and Battery Technology Fund will have two investment streams:

  • QIC will manage the fund and oversee venture and growth capital investments
  • projects seeking grant assistance will be referred to Queensland Treasury.

Eligible companies must be able to demonstrate alignment with fund objectives and Queensland Government policy objectives.

Assistance will be provided to new projects with demonstrated benefits to Queensland.

This may include building industry capability, supporting private sector infrastructure development, the creation of Queensland jobs, and upskilling and training opportunities.

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