U.S. Convenes a Multilateral Meeting on Energy Resource Governance Initiative (ERGI)

U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo convened a multilateral meeting on the U.S. Department of State-led Energy Resource Governance Initiative (ERGI) on September 26 during the high-level week at the United Nations General Assembly.

Growth in mineral intensive clean energy and electric vehicle (EV) technologies is creating unprecedented demand for raw materials and products. By the year 2030, 130 million EVs are projected to be on the road – up from five million today, according to the International Energy Agency. In turn, global demand on energy resource minerals will increase ten-fold over the same period. This presents complex challenges for some countries that are rich in energy resources but that face challenges with governance.

ERGI promotes sound governance and resilient supply chains in the energy minerals sector. Through this initiative, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Energy Resources (ENR) engages countries to advance governance principles, share best practices, and encourage a level playing field. The ERGI founding partners—Australia, Botswana, Chile, Peru, and the United States—share long histories of responsible resource management. Together, the United States and the other founding partners are developing a best practices toolkit on governance and transparency, which will support nations’ responsible mineral development.

ENR’s Assistant Secretary Frank Fannon facilitated a conversation among the founding partners and other participant countries including: Argentina, Brazil, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Namibia, the Philippines, and Zambia.  The participants discussed on shared challenges and opportunities for improving governance standards in extractive sectors to meet the anticipated demand for energy resource minerals.

President Trump released Executive Order 13817 on critical mineral management in December 2017. The Department of Commerce then released a government-wide action plan in June 2019, to reduce U.S. reliance on imported critical minerals. State Department’s ERGI complements the action plan by improving source country minerals governance and supporting resilient supply chains. ERGI provides a clear roadmap for better sourcing energy resource minerals globally by improving source country minerals governance and supporting resilient supply chains.

ERGI also advances key Administration priorities like Asia EDGE (Enhancing Development and Growth through Energy) and America Crece:Growth in the Americas, which seeks to catalyze private sector investment in infrastructure in Latin America and the Caribbean.