EU Critical Raw Materials Act: What It Means for Your Borates Supply

:: Wednesday, April 3, 2024 :: Posted By Javier Jusué de Olives

Last spring, the European Commission proposed a comprehensive set of actions aimed at ensuring EU access to a secure and sustainable supply of critical raw materials—enabling Europe to meet its 2030 climate and digital objectives. Central to this vision is the Critical Raw Materials Act (CRMA), which states that no more than 65% of your annual consumption of a strategic raw materials can come from a single third country.

Today, most of the boron supply in the EU comes from a single country: Turkey.

But what exactly are the implications of CRMA for you and how can we help?

What you should know about CRMA

The CRMA was formally adopted by the European Parliament on 12 December 2023 and was approved on 18 March 2024. The goal is to not only diversify the EU’s critical raw materials imports, but also improve the capacity to monitor and mitigate the risks of supply chain disruption. The act is also focused on promoting circularity and sustainable sourcing practices.

The CRMA outlines 34 critical raw materials, 17 of which are classified as “strategic raw materials.” Boron is considered a strategic raw material—those most crucial for vital technologies used in the green, digital, defense, and space applications.

What steps can you take to prepare?

Before CRMA enforcement begins, you should prepare your business.

First, look at your supply chain to better understanding your borate’s origin and supplier. This will help you determine whether you need to adapt your sourcing strategy and diversify. A clear understanding will also make it easier to adhere to future supply chain transparency and reporting requirements in the CRMA.

Then, gather information about new borate partners. A raw materials partner with a stable, reliable supply chain should be your primary concern. One who is well-versed in the European regulatory environment and attuned to CRMA requirements is a plus.

While it may seem like an arduous process to evaluate suppliers upfront, a closer examination of your boron source might reveal substantial process and product improvement opportunities.

Serving Europe for more than a century

For more than 120 years, European manufacturers have trusted our European operations—Borax Europe—to provide the refined borates that are essential to the production of high-quality products.

Our technical expertise, robust customer service, stable regional distribution network, and local knowledge can give you a strategic advantage.

We have three operational sites in Europe:

  • Coudekerque: Specialty grade production site with advanced equipment and testing capabilities
  • Rotterdam: Our largest European logistics hub, which hosts massive storage siloes with direct access to transportation networks
  • Nules: A strategically placed production, compaction, and distribution hub


These sites are supported by our sales office in Frankfurt, Germany, a team that has a proven history of working with clients to fulfill specific needs.

See more details about European operations

Have more CRMA or boron questions? Contact us.

There are still several outstanding questions concerning the CRMA and best practices to ensure compliance.

For more guidance, contact our sales team. We can equip you with more information to prepare your supply chain for this shift.




U.S. Borax, part of Rio Tinto, is a global leader in the supply and science of borates—naturally-occurring minerals containing boron and other elements. We are 1,000 people serving 650 customers with more than 1,800 delivery locations globally. We supply around 30% of the world’s need for refined borates from our world-class mine in Boron, California, about 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles.  Learn more about Rio Tinto.

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