Newsletter: July 2021

A message from Bernd Schäfer
CEO, Managing Director

Dear members and friends of the EIT RawMaterials Community,

I am happy to celebrate my first year since joining this ambitious and important community developing raw materials into a major strength for Europe! Over the last 12 months, we have together achieved some major milestones and succeeded in repositioning and reorientating our organisation for the future.

Our community navigated an intense year in 2020, and the start of 2021 was also characterised by the pandemic crisis. Regardless of these headwinds, we implemented the structural changes that we jointly agreed upon, in order to secure the financial sustainability and resilience of our organisation going forward. Together we developed and signed off our Strategic Agenda 2021-27, which lays the foundation for continued stable funding as well as a robust structure to support our partnership and our strategic objectives. At the political and societal level, there has been an upsurge of interest in and recognition of the key role that raw materials will play in Europe’s green and digital transitions. Our message is getting through! This was illustrated in the launch of the European Raw Materials Alliance (ERMA) last year, which was achieved through the strength and diversity of our network.

Fast forward to last month, when the RawMaterials Summit 2021 formed another highlight; it was great to see so many of our partners and friends connected alongside our high-level speakers. The focus was on the key topics of innovation, education, the circular economy and the European Raw Materials Alliance, and how these tools will help us make the European Green Deal a reality. I greatly enjoyed hearing different perspectives from exciting new start-ups, industry leaders and policymakers – and finished the event ever more convinced by ‘connecting matters’, we can make Europe’s green, digital future a reality. If you couldn’t make it, I invite you to view our short highlights video. An important date for your diaries is next year’s RawMaterials Summit which will take place in Berlin from 23-25 May 2022 – a great opportunity for our community to once again meet up in person and further strengthen our connections.

Our resource structure has the power to provide breakthrough concepts supporting the European Innovation Area and providing solutions to promote innovation, education and technology, to increase business competitiveness in Europe. However, all this is only feasible together with our partners and the engagement of a highly dedicated network of people, talents and teams, which together build the core of our competency and experience. This makes us unique! On this note, I would like to welcome CRONIMET Holding GmbH and Tata Steel IJmuiden BV joining us as new members to work closely with our community of experts in the circular economy. I am looking forward to our collaboration!

On the subject of the European Innovation Area (EIA), I recently presented EIT RawMaterials at the Knowledge4Innovation EIA manifesto handover event, which featured the delivery of K4I’s EIA Manifesto to our Commissioner, Mariya Gabriel. Our Innovation Community, as the leading global partnership in raw materials, is ideally placed to contribute to this important new European initiative.

As Europe gradually recovers from the pandemic, I hope to meet you in person soon! In the meantime, please stay safe, and enjoy your summer!

Warm regards,
Bernd Schäfer
CEO, Managing Director

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