Umicore gets €125m EIB loan to build cathode material facility in Poland

WCN Editorial Team 16 Jun 2020 EUROPE BUILDINGS

Umicore, a Belgium-based materials technology and recycling group, has secured a €125m loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the construction of a cathode materials production facility in Nysa, Poland.

Umicore will supply the cathode materials to manufacturers of lithium-ion batteries, which will be primarily used in electric vehicles.

Initially, the loan from EIB, which has a maturity of eight years, will cover half of the project costs and nearly 350 full-time jobs will be created once the facility starts operations.

Cathode materials from the facility will act as the key components of the lithium-ion battery cell manufacturers in the region and worldwide.

EIB vice-president and management committee member Teresa Czerwińska said: “This is the first EIB loan to Umicore and we are glad we can inaugurate our partnership with such an innovative project.

“The trend towards the electrification of the automotive industry is gaining ground and in this context, it is important to develop a European capacity across the full value chain of electric vehicle battery production.

“In March this year, the EIB signed a €480 million loan with LG-Chem Wroclaw Energy. We are playing an active role in creating the right ecosystem, in which manufacturers and suppliers work hand in hand, create qualified jobs and team up with nearby universities.”

EIB follows the priority set by the European Union to drastically reduce CO2 emissions and the cathode materials plant will position Umicore to support the transition.

The facility is expected to significantly contribute to European battery materials supply chain and create a competitive and sustainable battery ecosystem in the continent.

Umicore chief financial officer Filip Platteeuw said: “The transition to cleaner mobility is a priority in the European Union’s efforts to drastically reduce CO2 emissions, and Umicore is well-positioned to support this transition.

“Through its integrated European battery materials supply chain, Umicore will significantly contribute to the European Union’s plans to create a competitive and sustainable battery ecosystem in Europe.

“The development of our rechargeable battery materials activities in Europe is a strategic growth project for Umicore and we are proud that our green-field site in Poland has been selected by the EIB as part of its clean mobility projects.”

EIB has committed to supporting more than €1bn for battery-related projects across the entire value chain, this year.

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Umicore building the facility in Poland. (Credit: MaciejZych/Umicore.)

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