Costa says there can be no hesitation in exploiting lithium in Portugal

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The Prime Minister, António Costa, argued today that there can be no hesitation in taking advantage of the lithium that exists in Portugal, taking advantage of the fact that the country has the largest reserves in Europe.

“For the first time we have a natural resource that is the key to the energy transition, where we even have the largest reserves in Europe, which is lithium, and so the country cannot be anxious, it cannot have any doubts, it cannot have any hesitation that we really have to be able to take advantage of the lithium we have in Portugal,” stressed António Costa.

The chief executive was speaking at the Toyota Caetano factory in Ovar, in the district of Aveiro, during the presentation of the prototype of the Japanese brand’s electric vehicle designed specifically for the Paris-2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The outgoing prime minister said that decarbonization in Portugal is a “huge opportunity to harness and develop the country’s economic potential”, arguing that the use of lithium should include mining, refining and battery factories.

“We have all the potential in Portugal, if no one is hesitant or afraid to move forward, to have mining, refining and lithium battery factories,” he said.

Costa also referred to green hydrogen, another of the solutions in the area of decarbonization, saying that the country has “enormous competitiveness” in this fuel not only to feed the national industry, but also to boost the export of green hydrogen, becoming a more energy-exporting country.

“Lithium is there to be explored and exploited. Green hydrogen is a huge production opportunity for self-consumption and export and that’s why we have to invest in it,” he said, adding that the country has everything it takes to be able to invest in the areas of energy and mobility, “as long as there’s no hesitation in the choices that have been made.”

The chief executive also stated that the country is at the forefront of the energy transition, adding that due to the investment made in renewable energies, Portugal is able to have a green energy production price that is “extremely competitive on a global scale”.

“Just yesterday, the European Commission published a graph on the variation of energy prices in different countries. Some have increased more, others less. The only country where it has clearly decreased is Portugal, thanks to the contribution of renewable energies,” he said.

Before António Costa, the president of Toyota Caetano Portugal, José Ramos, had already called for the creation of a hydrogen distribution network, warning that the country was missing out on the opportunity to manufacture batteries.

“The largest lithium reserve in Europe is in Portugal and the combination of lithium production with its refining and battery production is fundamental because of the logistical problems and we are missing out on this because other countries are already doing it and we run the risk of losing this opportunity,” said the businessman.

Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi
Moti Shabi

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