The Development of Sustainable EU-Africa Partnerships

What is the Objective of AfricaMaVal ?

In a co-development perspective, AfricaMaVal project aims to develop an EU-Africa partnership ensuring a responsible sourcing of mineral resources for the European industry while granting a sustainable local co-development in the best Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) conditions and leading to a long-terms business environment for European and African companies. 

Indeed, while the development of the African mining sector will expand the availability of ECRM for EU supply chains, the increased investment and financing can allow the EU to exert leverage on raw material supply chain conditions in order to improve their sustainability profile.

This will be achieved for instance by linking sustainability requirements in project financing with recent consumer-driven trends of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investment and enhancing the integration of ESG challenges into business models. Besides, an additional emphasis will be placed on integrating the artisanal and small-scale mining sector (ASSM), which is highly relevant for livelihoods and local development in Africa. 

What does AfricaMaVal enable?

To identify opportunities, such as:

Mining, processing and/or refining projects;

The project developed in-depth analysis covering the mining sector and the national ECRM value chain structure from ten specific countries. It covers asset profiles, infrastructure overview and requirements, regulatory and legal framework, political and macroeconomic context, ESG context, mining sector characteristics etc.
The analyses can be found here for the DRC, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, South Africa, Madagascar Gabon, Namibia, Tanzania and Morocco.

This analysis will benefit :

  • Funding Parties looking to (i) identify funding opportunities, (ii) understand the risks involved, (iii) devise mitigating instruments to cover these risks.
  • Off takers looking to (i) identify offtake opportunities, (ii) understand the risks involved, (iii) devise mitigating instruments.
  • Project promoters and African countries wanting to understand how funding parties / off takers view “country risk”.

Potential pockets of liquidity for these projects; and

A Liquidity Mapping Reports (soon available) will support project promoters to understand: who typically funds what projects; how funding parties typically assess a project; and what may be “must have” to potentially unlock certain sources of liquidity.

Infrastructure debottlenecking opportunities to develop the supply chain.

To build partnerships along the value chain.

AfricaMaVal committed to build the “EU-Africa Raw Materials Networking Platform”, a Business to Business (or B2B) platform aimed at bringing together a number of stakeholders who share a common interest on African minerals / metals. More about the platform here.

To access tools to successfully develop projects, including:

Capacity building exercises around relevant international Environmental, Social and Governance standards; and

A list of Responsible Investment Opportunities in the ECRM value chains in Africa.

Who does it benefit?

  • For project promoteur, this list is a tool to successfully develop their project. They will be able to assess their project against criteria. It will provide detailed explanation around minimum requirements and typical assessment exercises undertaken by funding parties when considering a potential funding opportunity.
  • For investors, this is an opportunity to access projects which will have been filtered by technical experts, based on a select list of criteria.
  • For lenders, these lists offer similar benefits in that these projects will have been pre-assessed by technical experts.

To learn more about what Responsible Investment Opportunity are, consult the FAQ here. 

How will AfricaMaVal successfully build such EU-Africa partnerships
and ensure sustainable raw materials value chain?

To build such partnership in a sustainable manner, the AfricaMaVal project relies on the 7 steps as detailed below. Due to the high relevance of the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining sector (ASSM) for livelihoods and local development in Africa, a specific attention is being placed on integrating this sector along our different project’s steps. And additionally, a 8th step focusing on Communication and Dissemination is supporting the project’s implementation.

Learn more about each steps in details below: 

Creating a Pan-African dataset of ECRM supply potential.

Within this first step, our partners are working into integrating information on the Pan-African Extended Critical Raw Materials (ECRM) supply potential into one consistent dataset available for European political and industrial decision makers/stakeholders. This dataset will include available knowledge, exploration and mining projects, as well as existing processing and refining capacities. 

Analysing the Extended Critical Raw Materials value chain.

This second step of the project consist of the characterization and assessment of information on current ECRM value chains of both primary and secondary raw materials. The value chain items will be analysed and then sorted according to different characteristics such as project maturity degree, or level of beneficiation for specific CRMs. The analysis will also include the identification of potential bottlenecks and opportunities for growth of existing value chain segments, as well as projects with high economic potential or strategic interest. 

Identifying financial instruments.

The objectives of this step are to identify financial instruments and investment funds that may be available to development of RM projects in Africa at national, and/or international scale. The scope, coverage, and potential liquidity of these instruments will be defined, and their requirements and risk appetite will be specified. The objective is to determine liquidity sources for mining projects in the countries case studies. 

Analysing (ESG) conditions.

AfricaMaVal partners will contribute to improving the environmental and social sustainability of the minerals value chains in Africa, and to eradicate illegal and ethically doubtful practices, by informing the assessment of investment opportunities with Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) country data. A survey to assess specific ESG challenges across Africa will be carried out.

This way, the project will facilitate sustainable investment on a “do no significant harm principle” and enable the development of sustainable and responsible strategic partnerships for EU-Africa industrial value chain integration.  

Building an EU-Africa business network.

AfricaMaVal also aims at building an EU-Africa business network with upstream and downstream companies and steering the development of strategic partnerships and business models for EU-Africa industrial value chains integration.

It will allow connecting different stakeholders of raw materials value chains, including final users and strengthening the local governance and responsible business environments, together with other institutions and development partners (EITI, OECD, UNDP, WB, and Germany’s GIZ).

Developing a strategy for the integration of existing and emerging EU and African raw Materials value chains for the energy & digital transition.

Step 6 builds on the benchmarking activities carried out in steps 1, 2, 4, 5, and 7, analysing past and ongoing European and African project’s key challenges, inputs and potential synergies with AfricaMaVal. Envisioning thus the impacts of the targeted investments and tailored activities, step 6 partners will define a strategy for the integration of existing and emerging EU and Africa raw materials value chains for the energy and digital transition.

Identifying responsible investment opportunities.

The purpose of this step is to map and assess responsible investment opportunities in ECRM value chains in Africa (exploration, mining and refining projects). Thus, the investment analysis shall consider raw material potential, strategic relevance, economic feasibility, availability of infrastructure, good governance, ESG parameters and regulatory issues, and link up with the EU Green Deal and sustainable finance framework. 

What will be the results of the AfricaMaVal project?

AfricaMaVal will evaluate 100 ECRM value chains investment opportunities in Africa.

The main project’s tangible result will be a list of 100 evaluated opportunities of responsible investments in the ECRM value chains in Africa.  It is expected that between 30 and 50% of these opportunities could be converted into concrete projects of EU-African partnerships.

This would lead to a significant increase of European mining projects in Africa and thus would contribute to securing EU sustainable access to primary and secondary raw materials from Africa.