SADC e-Mobility Outlook: Accelerating the Battery Manufacturing Value Chain

The predicted uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) around the world will continue to increase the demand for lithium-ion batteries. At the same time, the electrification of transport is estimated to create 10 million jobs worldwide. The SADC region is endowed with all the raw minerals required to produce lithium-ion batteries. However, most of the minerals that are being mined are exported as raw materials, causing member states to miss opportunities for earning increased revenue from producing and exporting value-added products for the lithium-ion battery manufacturing value chain. The current battery manufacturing landscape in SADC shows potential for the development of raw material beneficiation, cell component manufacturing and cell manufacturing. Recommendations to develop the lithium-ion battery manufacturing value chain in SADC include: member states aligning their policies to the SADC Industrialisation Strategy Roadmap and SADC Vision 2050 to fast-track the adoption of EVs in the region; forming a regional battery alliance; instituting capacity development interventions in the private and public sectors and establishing a regional body for the testing and accreditation of lithium-ion cells and batteries. A just transition also needs to be at the forefront of all regulatory frameworks for lithium-ion battery manufacturing in SADC.