China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) will expedite the formulation of management guidelines for recycling new energy vehicle (NEV) batteries, as reported by China Daily on September 19. According to MIIT official Huang Libin, the ministry will keep looking for technical advancements in the effective disassembling and recycling of retired batteries and develop international and national standards for battery recycling. Additionally, MIIT will accelerate the development of reputable battery recycling enterprises.
Given the size of China’s NEV industry and the country’s limited nickel and cobalt resource reserves, more than 90% of these materials are now imported. NEV sales and production were 3.28m and 3.19m units between January and July, an increase of 1.2 times YoY. Batteries in China had a total installed capacity of 134.3 gigawatt-hours (GWh) during the same period, representing a cumulative YoY increase of 110.6%. In 2020, there were more than 200,000 tons of domestically produced retired batteries with a market value of RMB10bn (USD1.43bn); by 2025, the market for recycling used batteries in China may reach RMB40bn (USD5.7bn). According to MIIT data, by the end of August, more than 190 firms had established 10,235 battery recycling service outlets around the country. Additionally, China’s battery recycling businesses recycled and disposed of 64,000 tons of used power batteries by the end of March this year.