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Chile, EU to co-operate on lithium projects

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen with Chilean President Gabriel Boric in Santiago. Image: European Commission

Chile and the European Union have agreed to develop value-added lithium projects in the South American nation, and the parties will sign a memorandum of understanding soon, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said.

"We have agreed that we want to work on a strategic partnership on sustainable raw materials and the whole value chain," von der Leyen said, referring to the car-battery metal, at a joint press conference with Chile's President Gabriel Boric in Santiago.

Von der Leyen also announced new projects that would be a part of an initiative to deliver EU funding for new renewable hydrogen projects in Chile. Europe is offering $224 million of funding to strengthen Chile's hydrogen play. Earlier this month, the country availed $400 million from the Inter-American Development Bank for a similar purpose.

In April, President Boric had announced a National Lithium Strategy to expand mining through public-private partnerships in an attempt to overcome Australia and regain the top spot in global lithium production. 

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