SAFE, U.S. State Department Convene Minerals, Energy, and Defense Leaders at Munich Security Conference

The discussion focused on actionable strategies that would diversify access to critical minerals, as part of SAFE’s Mineral Investment Network for Vital Energy Security and Transition (MINVEST) partnership with the U.S. Department of State.

MUNICH, GERMANY—SAFE’s Center for Critical Minerals Strategy (Minerals Center) the European Initiative for Energy Security (EIES), and the U.S. State Department convened key decision makers and business leaders on the fringes of the Munich Security Conference to discuss the importance of full-value mining to developing reliable and secure sources for the strategic minerals required for defense, energy, and other applications.

Ambassador Geoffrey R. Pyatt, Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources and SAFE CEO Robbie Diamond hosted the discussion, which Abigail Hunter, Executive Director of SAFE’s Minerals Center, facilitated.

The discussion included European Commission Executive Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič as well as other dignitaries from the European Commission, the European Parliament, the U.S., Estonian, and Norwegian governments, and representatives from Rio Tinto, Silverado Policy Accelerator, and Columbia University.

The dinner comes as Estonia joins the Mineral Security Partnership (MSP), which aims to accelerate the development of diverse and sustainable critical energy minerals supply chains and whose work is supported by MINVEST.

The conversation focused on the imperative for Europe, North America, and their global allies to diversify access to mainstream critical minerals, as well as vital rarer ones, like germanium and gallium, which are extracted as co-and by-products of mining or processing other minerals.

Global mineral supply chains have become increasingly concentrated in the hands of hostile and unreliable governments. Further driving home the need for more diverse supply chains, last year Beijing restricted exports of germanium and gallium, two minerals which are essential to the production of microchips, fiber optic cables, solar cells, and other foundational components of everyday life.

Friday’s dinner further delivers on SAFE and EIES’s goal of bringing the private sector to the table to help chart a path toward creating more secure, transparent, and sustainable supply chains. SAFE and the State Department formalized the MINVEST partnership in November, making the nonprofit the Department’s sole NGO partner in the new initiative to spur investment in critical minerals supply chains.

In addition to the Munich Security Conference work, the Minerals Center recently published recommendations to improve standards, security, and transparency in global mineral supply chains by empowering lower-income, minerals-rich countries to move beyond extraction and develop advanced mineral economies while meeting surging global demand for energy transition projects. The MSC dinner precedes the establishment of the MSP Forum where U.S. and European Commission officials will collaborate on addressing the issues laid out in the Minerals Center report.

These recommendations were based on SAFE’s participation in two workshops with the respective Battery Councils of Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on ways to spur private sector investment and build regional capacity for strategic mining, processing, recycling, and battery production.

This work is guided by the Minerals Center’s foundational report, published in March 2023, A Global Race to the Top: Using Transparency to Secure Critical Mineral Supply Chains. The report outlines a vision for how the United States can work with its partners and allies to create higher standards in critical minerals supply chains through radical transparency, from the mine to the final product.


About SAFE’s Center for Critical Minerals Strategy
The Ambassador Alfred Hoffman, Jr. Center for Critical Minerals Strategy aims to secure all aspects of the critical minerals supply chain to help ensure the national and economic security of the United States and our allies as we transition from a fossil fuel based economy to a minerals based economy. CCMS is the sole NGO partner for private sector engagement to the State Department through the MINVEST project. The Center is also home to the Sub-Committee on Opportunities and Risks in the Critical Mineral Sector (SCOR) project with Appian Capital.

About EIES
The European Initiative for Energy Security (EIES) advocates for secure pan-European and national energy policies, dedicated to fostering collaboration between government and industry leaders. EIES seeks to address critical energy challenges and champion comprehensive solutions for the benefit of Europe’s energy security, transition, and industrial competitiveness. EIES works with the Energy Security Leadership Council-Europe (ESLC-Europe), composed of military, political and business figures, to achieve these goals. While launched through SAFE, EIES maintains independence from SAFE in its research and policy positions. Learn more at

About SAFE
SAFE is an action-oriented, nonpartisan organization committed to transportation, energy, and supply chain policies that advance the economic and national security of the United States, its partners, and allies. SAFE’s expert staff works with the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a peerless coalition of Fortune 500 CEOs and retired four-star military officers, to drive secure, resilient, and sustainable policy solutions. Visit to learn more.