Leading global mining and metals company Rio Tinto and Nippon Steel Corporation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly explore, develop and demonstrate technologies to transition to a low carbon emission steel value chain. With this MoU, Rio Tinto and Nippon Steel are looking to enhance their long standing relationship by extending it into new areas in support of the shared goal of significantly reducing carbon emissions across the entire steel value chain. The purpose of this partnership is to explore a breadth of technologies for decarbonisation of the entire steel value chain from iron ore mining to steelmaking, including integrating Rio Tinto's iron ore processing technology and Nippon Steel's steelmaking technology to establish an innovative steel manufacturing process with low carbon emissions.
The partners have agreed to a partnership model in line with the long-term and complex nature of the transition to carbon neutrality for the steel industry. This model allows the partners to take a long-term view to enable the pursuit of new and promising technologies as the global steel transition evolves.
Rio Tinto and Nippon Steel share a long history of working together, with the first shipment of iron ore from Australia to Japan coming from Rio Tinto’s Pilbara operations in 1966 and going to Yawata Works in Kitakyushu, now part of Nippon Steel.
Japan’s recent announcement of its commitment to realise a carbon-neutral society by 2050 has given Japanese companies even greater impetus to accelerate their decarbonisation activities. The intent of this partnership is in line with Japan’s climate ambition.