Nyrstar welcomes Australia's recognition of importance of zinc

Saturday December 16, 2023

Australia, 16 December 2023 – Nyrstar, an international producer of critical minerals and metals today welcomed the release of a revised Australian Critical Minerals List and the introduction for the first time of a list of Strategic Minerals that includes zinc, the fourth most used metal on earth.

The company acknowledged the detailed and comprehensive consultation process undertaken by the Australian Government in its revision of the Critical Minerals List and ongoing critical minerals policy development.

Nyrstar also signalled the need now for further engagement by the Australian Government with industry to provide detail on how the new lists would be utilised to inform Government policy and investment to secure the minerals and metals Australia and its international partners need for technologies and products essential to Australia’s economic future.

Nyrstar’s Global Co-CEO Dale Webb said, “We are pleased Australia has today recognised the strategic role zinc plays in key technologies and its importance in unlocking other critical minerals including germanium, gallium, and indium. This recognition is an important first step that needs to be similarly supported by increased awareness of the real and growing risk to supply disruption for zinc and urgent action to address it.

As published by Nyrstar in a recent white paper, industry estimates show that annual demand for zinc is expected to grow by 2.5 million to 3 million tonnes between 2020 and 2030, equivalent to around 20 per cent of current global supply, creating a supply gap equivalent to 150 percent of Australia’s current total zinc mining output.

“By recognising zinc’s strategic importance and risks to its supply chain, Australia will also be better positioned to improve bilateral cooperation with its international partners on projects that address the challenges facing the looming supply gap and increasing supply chain concentration facing both zinc and the critical minerals it unlocks.

“The energy transition is causing a rapid disruption in traditional markets for many commodities that Australia is well positioned to benefit from. We will continue to address this challenge by utilising our deep expertise in metals processing to work with the Australian Government on identifying unique opportunities that enable Australia to play a greater role in overcoming the looming market failures facing our nation and our trading partners in critical minerals,” said Mr Webb.

Read Nyrstar’s submission to the Government on the Critical Minerals List issues paper here.


For further information, please contact:

Nyrstar Australia: +61 (0) 467 775 055 or media@nyrstar.com