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BMW's electric concept car: securing independence from China


Jack Dempsey / dpa

According to a media report, Saudi Arabia is planning a second lithium processing plant to produce lithium hydroxide for BMW. "Much of the world is afraid of what will happen if China stops exporting," said Tony Sage, chief executive of European Lithium, according to a report in the Financial Times. That would be a catastrophe for the energy transition." European Lithium will supply the processing plant with lithium ore from its mine in southern Austria.

The lithium start-up European Lithium, which is listed on the Australian stock exchange, and the Saudi industrial conglomerate Obeikan Investment Group will each take over 50 percent of the shares in the plant, which will cost 350 to 400 million dollars, according to the Financial Times. From 2027, 9000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide are to be delivered annually from the new production facility to the German car manufacturer BMW under an existing supply contract.

With this project, Saudi Arabia also wants to strengthen its role in the production of electric vehicles and in the battery supply chain and move away from oil revenues.