Strategic, Critical & Essential Raw Materials in the ESEE Region
In Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, the availability, mining, processing and management of strategic, critical, and essential raw materials play a vital role in the region’s sustainable development and security. Ensuring a stable supply of such resources is crucial to maintain competitiveness and reduce dependency on external sources. The region’s rich mineral resources and diverse geological formations offer opportunities for strategic material production. The dynamics surrounding strategic, critical and essential raw materials in the ESEE region, and especially in Greece, are multifaceted and constantly evolving. However, efficient extraction, processing, and sustainable management practices are necessary to harness their potential effectively.

The objective of the session is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the challenges, opportunities, best practices and investment attractiveness related to these crucial resources. The session aims to explore the evolving dynamics of strategic, critical and essential raw materials in ESEE, determine how to increase investment confidence for the vast market potential that exists and facilitate discussions on their sustainable extraction, processing and management.

Commitments in uncertain times: A mission and a vision for essential raw materials in 2030 and beyondAntonis Antoniou Latouros – President, Aggregates Europe – UEPG
Gallium exploration potential in GreeceGrigorios Paschalis – Business Innovation Director, Metallurgy Sector, MYTILINEOS S.A.
European Dynamics of the RM SectorMark Rachovides – Em. President, Euromines
Greek Dynamics of the RM SectorKonstantinos Yazitzoglou – President, Greek Mining Enterprises Association & CEO, GEOHELLAS S.A.
Positioning from Greece on the Critical Raw Materials ActIoannis Zafeiratos – Director for Metallic, Energy and Industrial Minerals, Hellenic Ministry of Environment and Energy


Investment Potential in the EU Raw Materials Industry
The investment potential in the EU raw materials industry presents a compelling opportunity for investors looking to capitalize on sustainable and forward-looking ventures. As one of the world’s leading producers and consumers of raw materials, the EU holds a strategic position in global supply chains, offering a diverse range of investment prospects across various sectors. On the other hand, participants will discuss and showcase examples related to current and future investment needs of the EU raw materials industry that can contribute to resource security, supply chain resilience, sustainable growth and competitiveness of the EU’s raw materials sector.

In this session, the investment potential within the EU’s raw materials industry will be explored, shedding light on key areas such as green mining technologies, resource recycling and reuse, cutting- edge research and innovation. By delving into the industry’s current landscape and future prospects, the aim is to provide valuable insights for investors seeking to capitalize on the EU’s commitment to sustainability and the transformative opportunities it offers within the raw materials sector.

Identification of investment opportunities and needed steps to attract the required fundsAthanasios Kefalas – General Manager, Bentonite & Perlite
Intermediates, IMERYS
European viewpoint on RM investment potential in the ESEE regionNatalia Lacorzana – Head of Natural Resources, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
EIT Raw Materials – Additional funding sources – Innovation examplesAntony Slotboom – Access to Finance Director, EIT RawMaterials
Raw Materials – Opportunities for the Greek industry and the innovation ecosystemCostas Troulos – Senior Advisor, Industry, Growth, Technology and Innovation Division, Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV)
Recycling of lithium ferro phosphate batteries in Greece; Challenges and opportunitiesPanagiotis Xanthopoulos – Recycling Expert, Sunlight Group


Decarbonisation of the Raw Materials Industry
The raw materials sector is undergoing a significant transformation driven by the integration of green energy practices. Renewables, such as solar and wind power, are increasingly being adopted to power mining operations and reduce carbon emissions. Mining electrification is gaining attraction, with the shift towards electric machinery and vehicles powered by clean energy sources. This includes the electrification of heavy truck transportation, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality. These initiatives demonstrate the sector’s commitment to sustainability and a greener future.

The objective of the Decarbonisation of the Raw Materials Industry session is to explore the role of renewables and innovative energy reduction practices in the raw materials industry, as well as the importance of recycling and adoption of carbon capture systems. The session aims to discuss and showcase innovative solutions and strategies that promote the decarbonisation of the RM sector.

Carbon Capture solutions for the Raw Materials Industry (MITSUBISHI)Emmanouil Kakaras – Professor, NTUA & Executive Vice President NEXT Energy Business, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries EMEA Ltd
Opportunities for startups and entrepreneurs in the Raw Materials industryNiki Karali – CIO, Mantis – EIT RawMaterials RIS Incubator Greece
AI Unearthed: The digital makeover of mining operationsStefanos Kokkorikos – Co-founder & Managing Partner, CORE Group
Sustainability in metals manufacturingGeorge Mavraganis – Strategic Planning & Sustainability Senior Manager, Copper & Alloys Extrusion Division ElvalHalcor
CO2 transformation to synthetic fuels Potential applications in the extractive industry sectorAntonis Peppas – Assistant Professor, NTUA