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Nigeria, China sign new deal on battery plant

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By Usman Oladimeji

The project aims to boost Nigeria's rural electrification efforts.

A Chinese firm is set to establish a Lithium-ion battery Manufacturing facility in Nigeria with the support of the Federal Ministry of Power and the China Ministry of Ecology and Environment. The agreement, signed during the United Nations Climate Conference (COP28) in Dubai, marks a significant milestone in Renewable Energy development. With a worth of $150 million, the project aims to boost Nigeria’s rural electrification efforts while promoting sustainable practices. A statement released by the Rural Electrification Agency in Abuja confirms the signing of the deal.

According to the statement, the Rural Electrification Agency of Nigeria and the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure signed agreements to join forces with the SHENZHEN LEMI Technology Development Company On December 8, 2023. This groundbreaking alliance marks a remarkable step in Climate Action, highlighting the determination of these organizations to bring about significant change. It will facilitate the establishment of a factory focused on the manufacturing and processing of lithium-ion batteries in Nigeria, while also bolstering the country’s development.

Implementation of the project is set to kick off in Q2 of 2024.

LEMI has pledged a substantial Investment of $150m towards this project. Implementation of the project will be carried out strategically, planned in multiple phases, and slated to kick off in the second quarter of 2024. Enthusiastic about joining forces, the Chinese Ministry of Ecology and Environment, alongside Nigerian Federal Ministry of Power, expressed their excitement to be a part of this venture as confirmed by the Rural Electrification Agency of Nigeria. This collaborative endeavor is poised to serve as a groundbreaking step for the Light and Belt Initiative in Africa, harmonizing with international endeavors to promote the advancement and transmission of climate technology.

By teaming up, NASENI can fortify its role in overseeing the research and development of essential equipment, manufacturing, and reverse engineering methods. Its aim is to boost the domestic production of quality components and services, particularly for the Nigerian Electricity industry, as the agency operates under new leadership. Additionally, this partnership highlights the REA’s dedication to closing the technological gap related to climate issues and fighting against the negative impacts of Climate Change. The agency expressed that the collaboration corresponds to Nigeria’s aspirations of attaining widespread electricity accessibility by 2030 and accomplishing zero Emissions by 2060.

Foremost bilateral lender for Nigeria emerges to be China.

Moreover, the agency detailed that this alliance would encourage the advancement and dissemination of climate technology, invigorate homegrown industrialization, facilitate commercial endeavors, strengthen cooperation between the public and private sectors, and ultimately benefit Nigeria’s job market, Economic Expansion, and extractive sector. Efforts towards establishing an Economy with low carbon emissions as highlighted by REA includes acknowledging the importance of energy storage during the shift towards Sustainable Energy sources, investment into the production of lithium-ion energy storage.

This recent collaboration between Nigeria and China stands as a manifestation of their enduring alliance. Nigeria holds the second-largest trading position with China in Africa. These relations encompassed diverse sectors, focusing on fostering development that brings mutual advantages. China is the foremost bilateral lender for Nigeria and one of Nigerian top trading partners. Beyond Trade, China provides investment funds for major projects, with its companies entrusted with executing key projects, such as constructing railways, roads, and rehabilitating Nigeria key airports in Abuja, Lagos, Kano, and Port Harcourt.

Both nations collaborated to foster stronger bilateral relations.

China’s role in Nigeria’s development Finance is undeniably crucial. The year 2023 is significant as it commemorates the 52nd anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Nigeria. Both nations, despite being geographically far apart, have collaborated closely to foster stronger Bilateral Relations and promote greater interaction between their people. During a Belt and Road Initiative forum in Beijing, President Xi Jinping of China made a commitment to enhance investments in Nigeria’s Power Generation sector and Digital Economy, as reported by the Nigerian vice president’s office.


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