Mercedes to Build Electric Car Plant in Serbia? – Plans Include Lithium Excavation

Source: Demostat Friday, 24.02.2023. 10:00
(Photo: Christian Wiediger/Unsplash)
Mercedes, Rio Tinto, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Government of Serbia are negotiating about the realization of the project of the construction of Mercedes’ electric car plant in Serbia, Demostat learns in the diplomatic circles. The value of the project that the EBRD is taking part in is EUR 2.5 billion. The cars produced at the factory in Serbia should use lithium batteries, and the lithium is to be excavated by the Australian-British company Rio Tinto.

Demostat has learned that the Government of Serbia is negotiating with the German automotive giant, the Australian-British company Rio Tinto and the European finance institution about the realization of the project which entails the construction of an electric car plant. According to Demostat, the negotiations are getting closer to a final agreement.

The potential investment depends on whether lithium is to be exploited in our country, but also on the foreign policy orientation of Serbian authorities in the coming period.

The decision of the German giant to open a factory in Serbia, with guarantees from the EBRD, would be a clear indicator of the direction Serbia has chosen – toward the West. The arrival of the German giant from Stuttgart would also send a strong message to other big foreign investors that Serbia is a safe investment destination, Demostat says.

However, the condition for this and the realization of other investments from the West which are being planned is certainly a gradual harmonization with the foreign and security policy of the European Union, which in the end means imposing sanctions against Russia, Demostat adds and points out that the arrival of Mercedes could be part of the “carrot” which has been “promised to Serbia if it is constructive in its negotiations with Pristina and if it accepts the European plan for Kosovo and Metohija.”

Demostat reminds that European officials have made it clear to Serbian authorities that, if it doesn’t accept the European plan, Serbia can expect consequences which, among other things, but to a large extent, will reflect on the economy.

– On the other hand, if it does accept the plan, it has been made clear to Serbia that it will get economic support, as well as investments in various fields of the economy – this research and publishing center says.

The source of Demostat claims that, this time, the arrival of Mercedes to Serbia will not just amount to propaganda by the authorities, as in the case of cooperation between the German company and the Serbian Ikarbus, and that, instead, if the agreement is signed, what’s agreed will be realized as well.

This practically means that Rio Tinto will excavate lithium in Serbia, although the Government of Serbia officially canceled the “Jadar” project at the beginning of last year due to protests of environmental activists, the article claims.

They also remind of the earlier announcements that, if lithium is exploited in Serbia, the condition of the Government of Serbia is the construction of a battery plan and an electric car plant.

Your comment
Full information is available only to commercial users-subscribers and it is necessary to log in.

Forgot your password? Click here HERE

For free test use, click HERE

Follow the news, tenders, grants, legal regulations and reports on our portal.
Registracija na eKapiji vam omogućava pristup potpunim informacijama i dnevnom biltenu
Naš dnevni ekonomski bilten će stizati na vašu mejl adresu krajem svakog radnog dana. Bilteni su personalizovani prema interesovanjima svakog korisnika zasebno, uz konsultacije sa našim ekspertima.