The Federal Republic of Germany is one of the world’s largest consumers of mineral resources. Everybody uses about 1,000 tons of raw materials in the course of his life. Almost two thirds of them are mineral resources, such as metals as well as industrial minerals and rocks.
Of the non-metallic mineral resources, potash and rock salt and the large majority of industrial minerals and rocks originate from domestic production. When it comes to metallic mineral resources, however, we rely one hundred percent on imports. Hence, political and economic decision makers are not just responsible for the domestic industrial production and its resource supply, but they also share the responsibility for the sustainability of mineral resource extraction with those countries, from which these resources or processed products originate.
In order to secure the supply of mineral resources, the state provides the German industry with a scientific-technical and economic infrastructure. This also includes the activities of the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources in the field of “Mineral Resources”.
In the scope of Mineral Economics we analyse the developments in the global commodity markets. Our objective is to inform and advise the Federal Government, the industry as well as society on the availability and the supply situation of mineral resources.
Moreover, we are developing new instruments and concepts for the sustainable use of mineral resources in the scope of Mining and Sustainability.
In the field of Raw Materials Research, we investigate and assess mineral potentials. We focus upon the analyses of ore deposits of selected element groups or in selected areas as well as potentials for efficiency improvement in extraction.