Electric Vehicle

UNECA urges African nations to embrace battery and EV industry

Date: April 20, 2024.The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) is urging African nations to capitalize on the recent advancements in the battery and EV industry. This call to action was made during a technical review meeting focused on the implementation of a cross-border special economic zone, which is set to be established in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Zambia.

The proposed special economic zone aims to add value to minerals essential for manufacturing EVs, attract both domestic and foreign direct investment, create sustainable jobs, and contribute to the economic transformation of the region.

The transition from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles is expected to significantly expand the battery EV market. Estimates suggest that the market could grow to USD 8.8 trillion by 2025 and further to USD 46 trillion by 2050.

The surge in demand for rechargeable batteries, driven by the widespread use of smartphones and the need for renewable energy storage, presents a substantial opportunity for Africa to lead development based on a clean energy transition.

The initiative has garnered high-level political support, with the DRC and Zambia having signed a framework agreement for the establishment of the special economic zone in March 2023.

This initiative represents a strategic move towards mineral-based development and technological advancement, offering the potential to transform regional economies across the African continent.

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