How India’s EV Sector to Benefit from Lithium Deal between France and UK
As countries race to deploy and engage their strategic reserves for critical materials to achieve their electric mobility ambitions, lithium, which is used in the manufacturing of batteries for electric vehicles (EV), has emerged as the most sought-after material.
According to media reports, a partnership between a French minerals company and a British startup aims to produce enough lithium to power half a million electric vehicles per year.
Imerys, a Paris-based industrial supplier, has purchased 80% of British Lithium, a small private company based in the United Kingdom that mines lithium in Cornwall, southwest England.
They will collaborate to build a mine that will eventually produce enough lithium to produce 20,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate per year.
India has been pushing for indigenous EV battery manufacturing in order to foster an electric mobility ecosystem and achieve 30% electrification of its national fleet by 2030.
Last week, India joined the coveted Minerals Security Partnership, which is led by the United States and includes France and the United Kingdom as members. Using its strong diplomatic position, the country can advocate for a trilateral strategic partnership to establish a safe and dependable lithium supply chain.
A deal like this could help the country’s domestic EV manufacturing sector. The S&P Global India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) has already risen from 57.2 in April to 58.7 in May 2023, indicating that the country’s manufacturing sector is expanding.
This means that India has a high manufacturing potential, as long as raw materials are available in sufficient quantities.
This transaction is significant for the entire European lithium market because it could pave the way for the UK’s lithium production to have a sustainable future. Clean energy is a top priority for both India and the United Kingdom, with France being a key component of India’s diplomatic approach.
India’s potential new trilateral agreement with France and the United Kingdom to secure lithium supply chains will expand their strategic partnership and propel India’s EV growth to new heights.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to visit France in July 2023, and this visit could pave the way for this trilateral agreement, with France serving as one of India’s key defense partners.