China announced the discovery of a gigantic lithium deposit , which will strengthen its self-sufficiency and competitiveness. Lithium has gained importance as a key material in the production of batteries , both for electric vehicles and for stationary storage systems, including backup batteries.
The aforementioned country has consolidated one of the economic pillars of its growth by discovering a massive deposit of lithium, a significant fact at a time when the nation intensifies its efforts to explore internal resources and strengthen energy and resource security.
1 million ton lithium deposit
This discovery, estimated at 1 million tons of alkali metal , was reported by the Ministry of Natural Resources of China, located in Yajiang county, Sichuan province. This discovery will help increase Chinese supply of this vital resource for lithium batteries.
It is worth noting that the aforementioned country already had about 7% of the lithium deposits identified globally, ranking sixth after Bolivia, Argentina, the United States, Chile and Australia, according to the United States Geological Survey . However, the real key for the Asian giant lies in its ability to refine this resource. China currently refines about half of the lithium mined globally, but remains significantly dependent on external imports.
According to James Chin, professor of Asian studies at the University of Tasmania, Australia (currently the world’s leading producer of lithium), “China has been promoting itself as the epicenter of renewable batteries globally.” The new source of lithium, he added, could attract more investment to the electric vehicle battery sector in China. The country already manufactures around 70% of the batteries for electric cars globally. Last year, China’s combined exports of lithium batteries, backup batteries and new energy vehicles (NEVs) exceeded 1 trillion yuan ($139 billion), setting an industry record.
All three products use lithium and have additional economic importance as China seeks to move away from traditional sectors, such as real estate, to drive long-term growth in an industry whose technological advances will contribute to economic development.
The current competition for resources underlines that China will become the main reference in the production of vehicles and batteries, although other peripheral markets could benefit from the new deposits, allowing a more extensive development of the production system.
Don’t miss any of our posts and follow us on social media!