U.S. Releases Signed MOU with the DRC and Zambia to Strengthen Electric Vehicle Battery Value Chain

By Samuel Ouma

US Secretary of State Tony Blinken with President Tshisekedi of D.R.Congo and Hichilema of Zambia on the sidelines of the USA -African Leaders Summit

The Department of State has released the signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on electric vehicle battery value chains signed by the United States on December 13, 2022, during the Africa Leaders Summit.

In a statement, spokesperson Mr. Ned Price said that through the MOU, the United States will support the commitment between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Zambia to develop a supply chain for electric vehicle batteries jointly.

“The MOU supports the DRC and Zambia’s goal of building a productive supply chain, from the mine to the assembly line, while also committing to respect international standards to prevent, detect, and take legal action to fight corruption throughout this process,” said Mr. Price.

According to Mr. Price, the DRC produces more than 70 per cent of the world’s cobalt, while Zambia is the world’s sixth-largest copper producer and the second-largest cobalt producer in Africa.

Therefore, these resources, and the commitment to cooperation, are crucial components of the urgently needed global energy transition.

The plan to develop an electric battery supply chain opens the door for open and transparent investment to build a value-added and sustainable industry in Africa and create a just energy transition for workers and local communities.

Since the U.S. private sector is a tremendous resource, both for technical knowledge and financing, for commercial development at every step in the process, the U.S. government has committed to working with the DRC and Zambia to ensure the private sector has a level playing field to participate in these projects.

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