DRC to commence domestic battery manufacturing to add value to its cobalt and copper

The growing shift from fuel to electric powered vehicles means a dependency on countries rich in the relevant resources. Multinational auto-makers depend heavily on the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to source Cobalt for the manufacturing of car batteries.

Unfortunately, this much dependency does not reflect in terms of revenue and development as the country earns just a fraction from these exports. In a bid to scale up the sector, authorities in the country have announced that, plans are underway to venture into domestic battery manufacturing in a bid to seal revenue loopholes which results from the sale of resources at raw value.

Sama Lukonde who is the country’s current Prime Minister outlined plans by the government to commence capacity building towards the new focus. As part of the plans, the government aims to establish a Battery Council with the intention of “piloting the government’s policy to develop a regional value chain around the electric battery industry.”

The Prime minister who was speaking during a business forum in the capital, Kinshasa further added that, the government has also planned to engage the private sector in its plans by rolling out a special purpose vehicle with an aim to mobilize private sector funding to support the project.

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Considered the richest country in the world in terms of resources, the Southern African country mines around two-third of the world’s cobalt which is the main ingredient in lithium-ion batteries, and is also Africa’s main producer of copper.

However, the country has been ranked among a list of the least developed countries across the world due to a combination of factors, including the improper management and of the numerous resources scattered around the country.

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