EU approves €3.2bn in public funds for battery research

Battery producers in seven European Union (EU) countries are set to receive up to 3.2 billion euros (3.5 billion dollars) of research funding by 2031 in a project given the green light by the European Commission on Monday.
Seventeen companies involved in all parts of the battery production chain – from mining raw materials, to design and recycling – stand to benefit, the EU executive said in a statement.
The commission has identified modernised battery production as being of key strategic interest for Europe’s automotive sector and also for its push for cleaner energy.
European battery producers are lagging well behind their Asian counterparts, particularly when it comes to those used for electric cars.
Around 80 per cent of batteries worldwide are produced in Asia compared to 3 per cent in Europe, estimates show.
Big names like Germany’s BASF and BMW are to gain, as well as smaller companies like Italy’s Endurance.
Germany and France are to receive the lion’s share of the funds with a combined total of up to 2.2 billion euros.
Companies from Belgium, Sweden, Finland, and Poland are also to benefit.
The EU taxpayer money should also unlock 5 billion euros of private finance, according to the commission. (Reuters/NAN)