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Japan's new battery industry group to seek increased gov't support

Wed 14th April, 2021 1:39pm
TOKYO, April 14 (Reuters) - Japan's newly created Battery
Association for Supply Chain (BASC) said on Wednesday it will
seek increased government support as it aims to reinforce the
industry's global competitiveness and speed up decarbonisation.
    Formed this month, the BASC's 55 members include Nissan
Motor Co Ltd  7201.T , Sumitomo Metal Mining Co Ltd  5713.T ,
Asahi Kasei Corp  3407.T , Panasonic Corp  6752.T  and Toyotsu
Lithium Corp.
    "We will come up with policy recommendations that will boost
global competitiveness of Japanese battery industry and help the
industry's decarbonisation," Isao Abe, chairman of the BASC,
told a news conference.
    Increased support from government is needed as rivals in
China, the United States and Europe receive much bigger
subsidies and tax advantages, Abe said. 
    The group plans to submit policy recommendations to the
industry ministry by the end of July.
    These will map out measures to secure lithium, cobalt and
nickel and other natural resources used in batteries to help the
sector lower investment and manufacturing costs.
    Global battery demand is expected to grow as electric
vehicles replace gasoline-powered cars.   
    "We will also actively participate in international standard
deliberations and new regulatory planning," Abe said, pointing
to discussion over standardisation in lithium including mining,
concentration and conversion to lithium-ion battery materials as
an example.
    The BASC's members include suppliers of battery materials
and parts, battery manufacturers, trading houses and automakers.

 (Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; editing by Jason Neely)
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