President Aleksandar Vucic said that Serbia has 10% of the world’s lithium reserves and that it remains to be seen how many factories will be built here, once the ore starts to be exploited.
“We have 10% of the world’s lithium reserves, and when you have 10% of the entire global reserves of lithium, you can imagine what kind of wealth western Serbia is sitting on,” he said when asked if he is considering increasing the rent of ore for some profitable products like lithium.
The President stressed that the price of exploration rent cannot be changed so easily.
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“You cannot easily change the price of ore rent because we are not able to reach an agreement either with the NIS or with the Chinese, who have made great investments and helped us a lot by taking the Bor mine and saving us,” Vucic told Loznica.
He added that lithium is the most important thing for Serbia in the mining sector, even though it has been given away for free in the past.
“We could have had an electric car or bus factory a long time ago, but instead we wasted time. There are 26 ingredients in Yadarite, and one of these 26 is lithium, which is very complicated to extract compared to other minerals found in that stone,” Vucic added.
Vucic asks Rio Tinto and the Chinese to sit down at a table and talk: “We lost ten years or more, let’s start doing something before it’s too late”.
“We’ve made the decision that you can’t export lithium from here without the permission of the state. The lithium belongs to the Serbian people. Once we see how many factories we can open that will process the ore, we will determine what quantities can leave the country,” concluded Vucic.
(Vesti Online, 04.06.2020)
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