Bolivia is keen to sign a preferential trade agreement with India to attract Indian investors to make lithium-ion batteries and related products in the country.
It is reported that some large Indian companies are looking for investment opportunities in Bolivia.Bolivia, which has large reserves of lithium, recently introduced a lithium policy to attract public and private lithium buyers and investors.
Sergio Dario Arispe Barrientos, Bolivia's ambassador to India, said: "India's public and private sector as well as small car battery manufacturers have been invited to visit India to see which projects are available and accessible."
"Bolivia is considering a new lithium market, especially India," Barrientos quoted Luis Alberto Echazu, Bolivia's deputy minister of technology, as saying.Montenegro, the head of Bolivia's state-owned lithium mine, has asked government officials at the Bolivian embassy in new Delhi to find investors and buyers for the country's lithium resources.
"We don't want to be just an exporter of raw materials, we want to be involved in making batteries," Barrientos stressed.The government is also expected to produce a document in October that will finalise subsidies for key minerals in the industry, including lithium and cobalt.
Bolivia, which has the world's largest lithium reserves, could become a strategic resource partner for India.According to the US Geological Survey, the uyuni salt marsh alone contains 9m tonnes of lithium, more than a quarter of the world's known reserves.
India, for its part, is keen to sell 100 per cent of its electric cars (evs) by 2030, making it one of the world's top countries in making batteries.To achieve this, however, India needs to develop a strategy to overcome its relatively weak initial position in battery manufacturing and to take an increasing share of the value of batteries for some time to come.
India does not have a known source of lithium and cobalt minerals of its own, which are crucial to the revolution of electric cars in India within a decade.India's demand for lithium is expected to be 350,000 tons a year, according to industry estimates.