Australian companies can help India become a global manufacturing hub: Denise Eaton, Trade and Investment Commissioner, Australian Trade and Investment Commission

Denise Eaton, Trade and Investment Commissioner, Australian Trade and Investment Commission speaks on the recent visit and opportunities, which the Indian auto sector, especially EV, offers to the Australian companies.

By T E Narasimhan calendar 14 Oct 2022 Views icon11621 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Australian companies can help India become a global manufacturing hub: Denise Eaton, Trade and Investment Commissioner, Australian Trade and Investment Commission

What is the mining capacity in Australia?
Australia has one of the largest mineral reserves in the world and a well-established mining industry with world class equipment and technology. In addition, Australia is under-explored, but we have advanced geological intelligence that details the minerals under the ground.

We have over 70 types of mineral deposits of which 23 are currently produced in significant amounts from about 300 mines.

What is the potential demand in India over the next five years and how much can Australia export to India?
Australia has vast reserves but much of our offtake has already been committed over the next five years, particularly in lithium. Indian companies need to engage with the Australian critical minerals ecosystem now to secure the minerals it needs to supply its EV, IT, defence, and renewable energy manufacturing growth.

Recently, Australian mining companies visited India as part of Australia-India Business Exchange (AIBX). Were any agreements signed? Which OEMS did the miners meet?
The AIBX Business mission brought Australian and Indian business leaders together to explore economic opportunities for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic. Fourteen representatives from 12 companies meet with 65 Indian organisations over a period of five days, including Ola and Tata and across four cities — Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

Discussions between Australian and Indian companies were positive and will continue to develop. We have seen a strong uptick in interest and engagement with India and look forward to building on the engagement.

What kind of opportunities does the Indian auto sector, especially the EV industry, open up for Australian mining companies?
Indian manufacturers of two and three wheelers are investing in EV and moving upstream to develop batteries for supply chain security and diversification. Australia will be a critical minerals superpower as we have the minerals needed for essential modern day living including minerals needed for your phones, your computers, your EVs of the future, your renewable energy and medical technologies. 

We are the world’s largest producer of lithium, with the third largest reserves of lithium globally. We are the second largest producer of rare-earth elements, with many untapped deposits. We also have large resources of cobalt, manganese, tantalum, tungsten, and zirconium.

Under the Australia-India Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (AI-ECTA), there will be more opportunities for businesses in both countries. AI-ECTA will help unlock the potential of our long-standing relationship with India in critical minerals as our two economies strive to benefit from digital and low emissions technological advancements.

This agreement positions Australian critical minerals companies to support India’s aspiration of becoming a global manufacturing hub with ambitious renewable energy targets [500GW renewable energy by 2030].

So far, are there any supply agreements signed?
Through the Australia-India Business Exchange (AIBX), Austrade is working to connect Australian and Indian companies. Our trade and investment experts are sharing commercial insights and helping develop opportunities for collaboration in the sector.

No agreements in India yet, but agreements have been signed for offtake and investment in critical minerals from other parts of the world. Discussions take time and India has shown a strong interest in securing critical minerals and working collaboratively with Australia to invest in downstream production. Agreements like the AI-ECTA will encourage further collaboration.

What are the advantages that Australian mines offer to Indian OEMs?
Australia offers Indian OEMs reliable, responsible, ethical and sustainable critical minerals, vital to transition to a low carbon economy. Australian minerals are of high quality.

We are a world leader in the exploration, extraction, production, and processing of critical minerals. We have high tech engineering, advanced capabilities in environmental and water management and cutting-edge renewables research.

With developments in technology such as AI, Blockchain and traceability of mineral elements, it is vital that mineral elements are sourced from mines and mining projects that implement global standards. Australia is at the forefront of sustainable mining practices with our strong focus on ESG matters. We excel in mine safety and health as well.

Australia has a long and rich history as a successful mining nation, generating over A$220 billion in Resources and Energy trade during 2020.


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