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White House Issues Report On How to Disentangle Critical Materials Supply Chains From China, Just as Apple is Reportedly in Talks With Chinese Battery Makers

Securing reliable supplies of cobalt and other strategic materials from places like the Democratic Republic of the Congo featured prominently in a new White House report that aims to counter China’s dominance in this area. The timing of the report, however, comes just as Apple is reported to be in talks with two of China’s largest electric vehicle battery makers, CATL and BYD, about building new plants for an expected Apple electric vehicle.

  • WHITE HOUSE: “Cobalt received the lowest “quality” supply chain score of all elements, largely due to the alleged mining conditions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and conditions surrounding cobalt refining in China. In this approach, the country of origin for both raw materials and purification are considered, and if either step includes more than 50 percent import reliance on a country with questionable and/or strained relations with the United States, it is considered critical.” (THE WHITE HOUSE)
  • APPLE: Apple is in early-stage talks with China’s CATL and BYD, about the supply of batteries for its planned electric vehicle. Apple has made building manufacturing facilities in the United States a condition for potential battery suppliers, said two of the sources. A senior official in U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration confirmed that condition on Tuesday. (REUTERS)
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