Mining billionaire Forrest urges China to demand greener nickel – by Joe Leahy, Nic Fildes and A. Anantha Lakshmi (Financial Times – April 7, 2024)

Australian magnate points finger at ‘irresponsible’ standards for processing in Indonesia

Australian mining billionaire Andrew Forrest has called on China to demand higher environmental standards from its global supply chain, particularly its companies conducting nickel processing in Indonesia, an industry he accused of “complete environmental irresponsibility”.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Forrest — the chair and largest shareholder of Fortescue Metals Group — said electric vehicle manufacturers should be wary of Indonesian nickel, which he said was being extracted at immense cost to the environment.

“China will need to enforce its own environmental standards on its global supply chains,” Forrest said during a visit to Bo’ao, southern China. Every buyer of nickel “needs to be really careful if they’re buying from that [Indonesian] source”, he said.

Forrest, an iron ore billionaire who has long-held ambitions in nickel, shut down mines in Western Australia in January due to a sharp drop in the nickel price, partly driven by supply from Indonesia.

For the rest of this article: