The EV battery supply shortage might be even worse than the chip shortage

Huge issue in years to come

The ongoing global chip crunch has made consumer electronics tougher to track down. The electric vehicle industry faces a similar conundrum, but instead of semiconductors, companies are staring down a shortage of materials to make batteries. Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe predicted that the supply of EV batteries would become a huge issue in years to come.

The chip crunch, Scaringe said, would look like a “small appetizer to what we are about to feel on battery cells over the next two decades,” according to the Wall Street Journal. While giving press a tour of the company’s factory in Normal, Ill., last week, Scaringe said that building enough batteries to keep up with demand for EVs would be a major hurdle for the industry. He anticipates shortages in every part of the battery building process, including mining raw materials like cobalt, lithium and nickel, processing materials and building the battery cells themselves.

Tesla, Volkswagen And Nio Scrambling For Graphite

Graphex Group Ltd (GRFXY) is going to list on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) 

The White House is now more desperate than ever to secure America’s supply chain of critical minerals. That includes rare earth elements and battery materials, such as lithium, cobalt, and graphite–all of which are key not only to electric vehicles and energy storage, but to computer components, household appliances, and clean energy technology in general.

China controls most of this market and the only truly effective supply chain security move is to bring it all home. While sparse announcements by junior miners exploring North American venues for new sources of these battery materials offer some hope, they are risky opportunities for investors. The first company looking to bring one of the most important battery materials back home is Graphex Group Ltd (GRFXY), which has just announced plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

U.S. Ramps Up Battery Production With 13 New Gigafactories

GM, Ford, Tesla, SK Innovations and LG Energy Solutions are among the builders of new gigafactories

The energy transition is driving the next commodity supercycle, with immense prospects for technology manufacturers, energy traders, and investors. Indeed, new energy research provider BloombergNEF estimates that the global transition will require ~$173 trillion in energy supply and infrastructure investment over the next three decades, with renewable energy expected to provide 85% of our energy needs by 2050.

The transition from ICEs to EVs has become a focal point of the global electrification drive. In 2020, global sales of EVs increased a robust 39% year on year to 3.1 million units, an impressive feat right in the midst of a major health crisis. Bloomberg New Energy Finance(BNEF), however, says 2021 is “yet another record year for EV sales globally,” with an estimated 5.6 million units sold, good for 83% Y/Y growth and a 168% increase over 2019 sales. BNEF has forecast that annual EV sales will approach 30 million units globally by 2030.

That means that the world will need a massive ramp up in electric battery production. Indeed, DOE says the worldwide lithium battery market is expected to grow by a factor of 5 to 10 in the next decade. Luckily, the United States appears to be up to the task.

Russia And China Are Looking To Tap Afghanistan’s $1 Trillion Resource Reserves

Power vacuum

“Nature abhors a vacuum” is a familiar maxim in science. It means that empty spaces are unnatural as they go against the laws of physics. The saying could equally be applied to Afghanistan, where the end of a 20-year-old war with the United States has resulted in a power vacuum eager to be filled by another global power(s).

“Russia is clearly interested in [a] consolidated Afghanistan under a stable rule,” NBC News quotes Fyodor Lukyanov, a top Russian foreign policy expert who leads the Moscow-based Council on Foreign and Defense Policy. “It doesn’t matter so much for Moscow who is in charge in Kabul.”

Iran nearly went to war with the Taliban in 1998 after they killed 10 Iranian diplomats, but has since improved ties with the group; it is also one of Afghanistan’s biggest trading partners.

China sees an opportunity to exploit potentially lucrative oil and gas and mining projects which have been scrubbed or delayed by security concerns, a lack of infrastructure and technical issues. The country reportedly has $1 trillion worth of minerals in reserves, including copper, iron, lithium and rare earths.

Beijing recently said it would provide the Taliban with $31 million in emergency aid including food and 3 million covid-19 vaccine doses.

All three countries are worried that the withdrawal of US forces will create chaos in the region, ensnaring them in Afghanistan’s internal affairs. Moreover, they are concerned about terrorism once again breeding under Taliban protection.