Minerals Security Partnership (MSP):
As part of a global ‘China-plus-one’ strategy adopted post the Covid-19 pandemic that caused massive supply-chain disruptions, a group of western nations are cooperating to develop alternatives to China to ensure key industrial supplies.
- A new US-led partnership initiative of 11 nations aims to bolster critical mineral supply chains. India is not part of this arrangement — called the Minerals Security Partnership (MSP) — but New Delhi is working through diplomatic channels to fetch an entry.
- The US and 10 partners — Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Japan, the Republic of Korea (South Korea), Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the European Commission — have come together to form the MSP.
- The new grouping is aimed at catalysing investment from governments and the private sector to develop strategic opportunities.
- The new grouping could focus on the supply chains of minerals such as Cobalt, Nickel, Lithium, and also the 17 ‘rare earth’ minerals.
- The 17 rare earth elements (REE) include the 15 Lanthanides (atomic numbers 57 — which is Lanthanum — to 71 in the periodic table) plus Scandium (atomic number 21) and Yttrium (39). REEs are classified as light RE elements (LREE) and heavy RE elements (HREE).