BMW to buy cobalt direct from Australia, Morocco for EV batteries
PARIS, April 23 (Reuters) - German carmaker BMW
will buy cobalt, a key component for electric vehicle (EV)
batteries, directly from mines in Australia and Morocco to
ensure they are not produced by child labour, an executive said
The announcement came as the London Metal Exchange (LME)
launched an initiative under which it could ban or delist brands
that are not responsibly sourced by 2022 to help root out metal
tainted by child labour or corruption.
Andreas Wendt, BMW board member responsible for procurement,
told a briefing in Paris that the new supply of cobalt would be
used in the carmaker's next generation of EVs in 2020.
The world’s largest known reserves of cobalt are found in
the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the raw ingredient is
often mined by small, artisanal operations and supply chains are
not strictly monitored.
BMW said last year it was exploring ways to improve working
conditions for mining cobalt in Congo through a pilot project.
(Reporting by Pratima Desai and Peter Hobson, writing by Eric
Onstad; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)
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