For Europe, battery production is a strategic imperative for clean energy transition and the competitiveness of its automotive sector. Moreover, the Commission's ‘new industrial policy strategy’ goal is to make the EU the world leader in innovation, digitisation and decarbonisation.
Report on implementing strategic action plan on batteries: building a strategic battery value chain in Europe
"Batteries are at the heart of the industrial revolution and I am convinced that Europe has what it takes to become the world’s leader in innovation, decarbonisation and digitisation." - Vice-President Maroš Šefčovic
"Europe is investing in a competitive and sustainable battery manufacturing sector. We want to provide a framework that includes secure access to raw materials, support for technological innovation and consistent rules on battery production. We envisage a strong battery industry that contributes to the circular economy and clean mobility." - Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska
The European Battery Alliance (EBA) was launched in October 2017 by Vice President Šefčovič.
This cooperative platform gathers
The immediate objective is to create a competitive manufacturing value chain in Europe with sustainable battery cells at its core . To prevent a technological dependence on our competitors and capitalise on the job, growth and investment potential of batteries, Europe has to move fast in the global race. According to some forecasts, Europe could capture a battery market of up to €250 billion a year from 2025 onwards. Covering the EU demand alone requires at least 10 to 20 ‘gigafactories’ (large-scale battery cell production facilities).
The scale and speed of the necessary investment require a combined effort to address this industrial challenge.
With the strategic action plan for batteries, the Commission adopted a comprehensive set of concrete measures to develop an innovative, sustainable and competitive battery 'ecosystem' in Europe. The plan aims to
This approach will promote the production and use of high-performing batteries and set sustainability benchmarks throughout the value chain.
Since the launch of the European Battery Alliance, there have already been tangible developments with the announcements of industrial consortia or partnerships. The tab below contains a chronological account of all events, meetings, speeches and press releases related to the European Battery Alliance. It is regularly updated to reflect the latest developments.
Vice-President Šefčovič and EIB Vice-President McDowell met with members of the European Battery Alliance, discussing
Sector skills alliances tackle skills gaps regarding one or more occupational profiles in a specific sector.
This blueprint to sectoral cooperation on skills was piloted in 6 sectors experiencing severe skill shortages. One of these sectors was 'Batteries for electro-mobility'.
Within a year of the launch, the Commission action plan is in place, the first pilot production facilities are being built and further projects are announced to establish the EU as the lead player in the strategic area of battery innovation and manufacturing.
Vice President Šefčovič met with the representatives of the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC). There was an agreement on the need to promptly identify and develop the standards necessary to establish competitive, innovative and sustainable batteries' value chain in the EU.
The plan was developed in close consultation with stakeholders including industry and EU countries and building on the industry-led approach. It combines targeted measures at EU level including in raw materials, research and innovation, financing/investment, standardisation/regulatory, trade and skills development. These measures aim to make Europe a global leader in sustainable battery production and use, in the context of the circular economy.
Northvolt: first step towards European large-scale battery cell manufacturing
The kick-off of the construction of Northvolt Labs. Once completed in 2019, the cutting edge scale-up and research facility will be used to develop, test and industrialise lithium-ion battery cells before large-scale production.
As part of European Industry Day, the forum focused on the role that European industry can play in the clean energy transition.
EU supports Northvolt's European battery project with InnovFin backing
This regards the EIB loan of up to €52.5 million for the construction and operation of a first-of-a-kind demonstration plant in Sweden. It is supported by the European Commission through InnovFin, under the Energy Demo Projects Facility.
The launch of the friends of EU Battery Alliance group in the European Parliament
This meeting was on the mission and vision of the global battery alliance, the challenges and the areas for future work (supply of raw materials, towards circular economy for batteries, unlocking innovation along the value chain).
The launch of the European Battery Alliance by the European Commission with key industrial stakeholders, active EU countries and the European Investment Bank. This cooperative platform is aimed at facilitating the emergence of well-integrated and industry-led battery cell manufacturing projects.
More than 120 industrial and innovation actors are active under the Alliance and collectively endorsed recommendations for priority actions steered by EIT InnoEnergy in partnership with active EU countries and the EIB.