- Bulk business battery recycling
- Gamestop pushes China’s trading app Webull
- Cotton from forced labor – even in our wardrobes
- Czech Republic blocks Beijing in nuclear power tender
- Hong Kong: record emigration to Taiwan
- Xie Zhenhua: China’s new climate envoy
- Chinese broadcaster CGTN loses license in the UK
- Arvind Subramanian and Josh Felman: The year of the renminbi?
- Heads: Andrew Cheung
America and Europe join forces against China? Not a good idea, says Emmanuel Macron, warning that such a scenario, in which “everyone joins forces against China”, carries the highest potential for conflict and is therefore “counterproductive”. Last night, the French president was a guest at the US think tank Atlantic Council, where he suggested that a united front against Beijing could lead to China reducing cooperation on climate action and tightening its regional agenda in Asia.
In today’s China.Table, I would like to recommend a topic with the greatest relevance for Germany. The trend towards electric cars is unmistakable. But what happens to the batteries when they are no longer needed? There are already more than four million EVs on the roads in China. For Christiane Kuehl, this was reason enough to take a closer look at Beijing’s legislation on battery recycling, the technologies and the market.
Finn Mayer-Kuckuk calls Webull the “financial app of the mighty dwarves”. His finding: The Chinese trading app is one of the hitherto unnoticed winners in the US in the turmoil surrounding Gamestop.
Felix Lee spoke with China researcher Adrian Zenz about forced labor among the Uyghur minority. “It is very likely that much of the cotton production in Xinjiang is tainted with forced labor,” says Zenz. The first fashion companies are already responding. They don’t want to taint their brands with the stain of genocide.
Christiane Kuehl wrote in the first issue of China.Table in mid-December that Beijing wants to enter the billion-dollar business of building nuclear power plants around the world. As it now turns out, the competitors are not asleep. The Czech Republic wants to exclude the Chinese bidder for the construction of a new reactor in Dukovany from the tender.
Batteries for electricity storage
A wave of spent batteries is rolling toward China: Worn-out or badly slowed batteries from the country’s ever-growing EV fleet. These are not simply allowed to go to waste. EV makers are obligated to take care of recycling – to use raw materials sparingly and to protect the environment and climate. Worn-out but still functional batteries can be used as stationary energy storage units. After the battery dies, however, there is only one thing left to do: recycling the battery cells – and thus break them down into their usable components and raw materials such as cobalt, lithium, nickel, manganese or graphite.
Since the beginning of 2020, targets have been in place that call for a recovery rate of at least 98 percent for nickel, cobalt and manganese; lithium is to be recycled at 85 percent, and rare earths at 97 percent. These recovered materials are expected to go straight back into new batteries.
China’s EV pioneer BYD from the southern Chinese economic special zone Shenzhen already operates a battery recycling factory in Shanghai and recycles battery cells there as a source of raw materials for itself. The company also supplies customers who build energy storage systems from old batteries that can still be used – such as the state-owned company China Tower, which builds telecommunications base stations and also receives old batteries from other companies.
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