E-Autos: Die gefährliche Abhängigkeit der EU von China bei Batterien

Chinesischer Autohersteller Xiaopeng auf der IAA in München: Gefährliche Abhängigkeit

Chinesischer Autohersteller Xiaopeng auf der IAA in München: Gefährliche Abhängigkeit

Foto: Manfred Segerer / IMAGO

The Spanish EU presidency is cautioning the international community about the risk of becoming dependent on China for lithium-ion batteries and fuel cells. Experts warn that without appropriate countermeasures, the EU could become as reliant on China by 2030 as it was on Russia for energy supply before the conflict in Ukraine. This warning is outlined in a strategy paper prepared for the EU heads of state and government, which will serve as the basis for discussions on Europe’s economic security at the EU summit in early October in Granada, Spain.

The paper states that Europe will need energy storage due to the unpredictable wind and solar energy in order to achieve its goal of eliminating greenhouse gases by 2050. This will increase the EU’s demand for lithium-ion batteries, fuel cells, and electrolyzers used in hydrogen technology by 10 to 30 times in the coming years.

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„Without the implementation of effective measures, the European energy ecosystem could become dependent on China by 2030, a dependency that is different but equally significant as the one with Russia before the invasion of Ukraine,“ write the authors of the paper. The EU has a strong position in the production of electrolyzers and is heavily reliant on China for fuel cells and lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles.

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According to the paper, it is stated that lithium-ion batteries and fuel cells are not the only areas in which the EU is vulnerable. A similar scenario could occur with digital technologies. Forecasts indicate that the demand for sensors, drones, servers, storage devices, and data transmission networks will increase significantly in this decade. The EU has a relatively strong position in networks, but significant weaknesses in other areas.