ECONOMY | More investment in lithium.
On 11 November the government of President Evo Morales of Bolivia announced a US$40m investment plan in a pilot lithium battery manufacturing plant in the town of La Palca, in the highlands region of PotosĂ. The announcement is the latest sign of the governmentâ€™s efforts to move on its pledge to develop the lithium sector using the countryâ€™s reserves. These are mostly located in the Uyuni salt plains and total some nine million tons (mt), according to the latest US Geological Survey (updated in January 2012); however, Morales has previously said these could be closer to 100mt. The investment announcement follows the August inauguration of a semi-industrial potassium chloride (KCl) plant in Uyuni, which Morales hailed as the start of the lithium industrialisation process
. Morales said he hoped that the La Palca plant, which has been bought from China, would begin operating in the first half of 2013.
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