“It is good that the state knows what it can get from its mines and minerals as the estimated value of mineral reserves in Serbia exceeds EUR 200 billion, which is a huge wealth,” Energy and Mining Minister, Zorana Mihajlovic, during her guest appearance on Happy TV.
The Minister also reiterated that no contract will be signed with Rio Tinto until all the required environmental impact studies have been finalised and until everyone has an in-depth view of the project.
“Serbia will not do anything that jeopardizes the environment, whether it is excavating lithium, the mineral of the 21st century, or anything else. Only when we understand that lithium can be produced sustainably while protecting the environment, we will contemplate opening lithium battery and electric car battery factories. Another ore to look into is Jadarite, a one-of-a-kind mineral in the world. I would also like to point out that nobody has the right to explore a piece of land until its owner allows it. If the owner does allow it, the company that will do the exploration has to fulfil a number of criteria, including having a properly drafted project and obtaining the consent of various institutions,” the Minister said.
She went on to say that it was up to the state to create the laws and control their implementation and that 2021 would be an important year for the energy sector.
“We did not pass four new laws by accident. We have to create a good energy policy in the time to come, and be energy and environmentally safe so that our citizens have enough electricity which we are going to produce more and more from renewable sources, hydro, gas and solar power plants, whilst, in the process, reducing and closing thermal power plants in the decades to come,” Mihajlovic concluded.
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