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Reuters: EU risks depending on China for batteries after dropping Russian energy

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 18, 2023 8:04 PM 2 min read
Employees work at a lithium-ion battery manufacturing plant on Feb. 27, 2021 in Huaibei, Anhui Province of China. (Li Xin/VCG via Getty Images)
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By 2030, the European Union could become as dependent on lithium-ion batteries and fuel cells from China as it was on Russian energy supplies before the war against Ukraine, Reuters reported on Sept. 18, citing an obtained EU document.

Due to the irregular nature of renewable energy sources like solar or wind, Europe will need instruments to store energy to achieve its goal of zero carbon emissions by 2050, said the document prepared for EU leaders' meeting on economic security.

"This will skyrocket our demand for lithium-ion batteries, fuel cells and electrolysers, which is expected to multiply between 10 and 30 times in the coming years," the paper explained, as cited by Reuters.

"Without implementing strong measures, the European energy ecosystem could have a dependency on China by 2030 of a different nature, but with a similar severity, from the one it had on Russia before the invasion of Ukraine."

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Although the EU holds more than 50% of the global market in the intermediate and assembly phases of producing electrolysers, the bloc relies massively on China for fuel cells and lithium-ion batteries critical for electric vehicles, Reuters wrote.

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