China now dominates the world’s supply of nickel, a critical mineral needed to manufacture batteries for Electric Vehicles (EVs) in the United States, a new report details.
By rapidly expanding its growth across Indonesia, a country that sits on a vast nickel ore supply, China has been able to dominate the market for critical minerals that the U.S. needs to produce EVs — an issue for any “Made in America” agenda, especially one laid out by President Joe Biden’s administration.
According to the Wall Street Journal, China’s moving in on Indonesia’s nickel supply “is a blow to U.S. efforts to lessen American firms’ dependency on China,” with the Biden administration being largely outpaced.
The Journal reports:
President Biden’s signature clean-energy policy, the Inflation Reduction Act that passed last year, ties electric-car subsidies to mineral-sourcing requirements. That means it matters more than ever where a mineral is extracted and refined—and by whom. [Emphasis added]
To qualify for certain subsidies, the law requires that EV batteries will soon have to largely contain minerals from the U.S. or a country with which the U.S. has a free-trade agreement. That excludes Indonesia. Chinese firms’ heavy involvement in Indonesia’s nickel operations is also likely to attract scrutiny under its provisions. [Emphasis added]
Nickel is one of many materials needed for EV batteries that the U.S. is losing to China.
As Breitbart News reported, China dominates graphite, lithium, and cobalt. By 2025, for instance, China is set to control about a third of all of the world’s lithium.
In May, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) noted that, at the current pace, China will control the production of EV batteries and the materials needed to produce them.
“… the metals needed to make the lithium ion batteries in those vehicles are of course lithium, nickel, graphite, and cobalt,” Hawley said in Senate testimony, to which Biden’s Department of Interior Secretary Deb Haaland replied that she was unaware China dominated lithium.