Economic Importance, Environmental and Supply Risks on Imported Resources in Lithuanian Industry
Secure raw material supply is one of the most important topics for industry. Growing economies such as China, India, Brazil and others increase the global demand and in the same time the competition for resources. In order to undertake appropriate actions the most important raw materials should be identified. The aim of this study was to identify the most important raw materials for Lithuanian economy in terms of economic importance, supply and environmental risks.
The methodology used in the study relies on three sustainability dimensions accordingly expressed by three indicators: Economic Importance (Economic dimension); Supply Risk (Social dimension); Environmental Country Risk (Environmental dimension). The methodology used to define these indicators on imported resources for Lithuanian industry was adapted from report on critical raw materials for European Union (Report of the Ad-hoc Working Group on defining critical raw materials 2010) published by European Commission in June 2010. Critical raw materials are considered to be economically important and the subject to a higher risk of supply interruption.
All materials investigated in this study were combined into five groups: chemicals, metals, building materials, paper, paperboard and wood, other materials. Only the imported raw materials were selected for further analysis. The significance of raw material import was considered as important according to the ratio of production and consumption of certain material. After the analysis of statistical information about raw materials import in Lithuania and the actual countries of origin of these resources twenty one raw material was selected for further investigation.
According to the results of assessment the list of critical raw materials for Lithuania was indentified. Results of the investigation showed that top five materials in terms of economic importance, supply and environmental country risks for Lithuanian economy are: crude oil, natural gas, sulphur, caustic soda, cast iron.