One critical and strategic component in Europe’s e-mobility value chain, which is still weak, is batteries, European Commission Vice-President for the Energy Union Maroš Šefčovič said in Munich on June 21.
Šefčovič was attending Intersolar Europe, the world’s leading exhibition for the solar industry, as well as Electrical Energy Storage Europe, Europe’s largest exhibition for batteries and energy storage systems. He reiterated the Commission’s commitment to create an innovative and sustainable battery ecosystem in Europe under the industry-led European Battery Alliance.
The Vice President noted that the new Action Plan includes a set of robust measures to boost the Battery industry.
“We’re taking a proactive approach to critical raw materials in an effort to boost our strategic independence. Through mapping and the exploration of EU resources – which is significant unexplored potential in 13 EU countries; facilitating access to secondary raw materials through recycling in a circular economy of batteries; through free trade agreements securing fair and sustainable access to raw materials from resource-rich countries outside the EU,” he said.
“We are stepping up EU research and innovation to better link it with industry’s future needs: in 2018-2019, €110 million available for battery-related research and innovation projects; in 2018-2020, a budget of €2.7 billion available under the European Innovation Council for potential breakthrough projects and batteries could be part of it,” he said.
“We are establishing robust regulatory requirements for safe and sustainable batteries production to comply with when placed on the EU market. This is where our competitive edge lies. We want to be a global trendsetter. This should cover the entire value chain from sustainable supply of raw materials, through production to recycling. This and next year, we will be in close contact with the European standardisation bodies in order to develop European standards – the green label,” Šefčovič said.
“We are not wasting any time; for each proposed action, there is a quite tight deadline. It is encouraging to see that all actors under the EU Battery Alliance are pooling their weight – some 120 industrial and innovation actors involved, Member States, the European Investment Bank,” the Vice President said.