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Saudi Arabia to Secure Lithium for EV Production

Saudi Arabia announced its commitment to securing lithium from abroad to support its ambitious goals in electric vehicle battery production during the World Economic Forum, reported Reuters.

In an interview with Reuters on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, Bandar Al-Khorayef, highlighted the serious attempts to secure domestic supplies emphasizing the Kingdom’s bold vision to emerge as a prestigious hub for manufacturing electric vehicles.

Al-Khorayef confirmed the pivotal role of lithium as a crucial component for batteries, mentioning the promising Saudi initiatives to extract lithium from seawater in collaboration with Aramco. “Lithium is a very important mineral” and “a very important part of the supply chain, especially for batteries,” Al-Khorayef said.

However, he acknowledged that authorities need more efforts and endeavors to ensure the feasibility of local lithium extraction.

He underscored that such economic feasibility depends on two key factors: the size of deposits and their concentration. Currently, there is no conclusive evidence determining that the Kingdom has the right size of both deposits and concentration. This uncertainty necessitates further research and exploration. As a result, the Public Investment Fund and Ma’aden, Saudi Arabia’s flagship mining company, formed a joint venture last year, named “Manarat Al-Ma’adin” to invest in mining assets abroad.

In response to a question on international lithium investments, Al-Khorayef expressed his confidence in Saudi Arabia’s ability to provide its natural resource requirements through the local production and importation.

The minister’s remarks align with Saudi Vision 2030 aiming at achieving a robust growth in the electric vehicle market and supporting the Kingdom’s transition towards sustainable transportation.

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