Portugal is currently considering, as part of the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) to access community funds after the Covid-19 crisis, a cross-border project with Spain for the exploration of lithium, to boost the construction and recycling of electric car batteries.

“Giving a double response to the European strategies for raw materials and batteries, Portugal intends to develop with Spain a complete industrial process and product innovation line, which allows the good use […] of the existing lithium in both countries, developing a cross-border project for the construction and recycling of electric batteries for automobiles”, according to the PRR document.

In part of the plan dedicated to cooperation with other countries, the Portuguese executive notes that “not only are the main lithium deposits close to the border, but Portugal has the ability to attract technology and companies interested in refining them”.

For this reason, the Iberian Institute of Nanotechnology, belonging to both countries, “is developing projects to create state-of-the-art cells that may soon enter the testing phase”, explains the Government in the document.

“The intermediate step between refining and battery production is the manufacture of lithium cells”, the document adds.

The objective is for businesses related to the construction and recycling of batteries to “settle in the border regions between Portugal and Spain, while also benefiting from the strong presence of the automotive industry in both countries”, indicates the PRR.

The Government recalls that the regulation on the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism provides for cross-border projects between Member States.

In total, Portugal’s Recovery and Resilience Plan lists 36 reforms and 77 investments in the social, climate and digital areas, representing a total of €13.9 billion in grants.