03 Apr 2024 -

EV push collides with supply chain realities

EV Auto supply chains

The aggressive push for electric vehicles (EVs) in the US is slamming into a harsh reality: critical supply chains controlled by China pose major risks to both the auto industry and consumers, writes Larry Bell, on Newsmax.

According to Bell, recent crackdowns on imports linked to alleged forced labor in China’s Xinjiang region have led to the seizure of thousands of German-made Volkswagens, highlighting the vulnerability of carmakers reliant on Chinese components. Major brands like Porsche, Bentley, and Audi are also facing delays and potential sanctions.

The situation is further complicated by concerns over forced labour in the aluminum supply chain, a key material in EVs. Reports indicate major automakers, including Tesla, GM, and Toyota are failing to ensure ethical sourcing, raising serious ethical concerns.

At the same time, the US remains heavily dependent on China for rare earth minerals essential for EV batteries. China controls around 80% of the global supply, and US miners still ship their ore to China for processing – a staggering paradox given the Biden administration’s anti-mining policies.

These factors are driving up costs. Lithium battery prices are skyrocketing, making both new and used EVs increasingly expensive. This price pressure along with supply chain delays is hitting automakers hard. Ford recently halved production targets for its electric F-150 and delayed a battery plant. GM is facing similar challenges, delaying a major EV truck factory.

The disconnect between government mandates and market demand is stark. Consumers are hesitant to embrace EVs, and despite $7,500 federal subsidies, U.S. sales are sluggish. The resale market for used EVs is gloomy, with the prospect of costly battery replacements looming large for potential buyers.

Bell claims the EV push isn’t just an economic gamble – it’s geopolitical too. By deepening reliance on China, the US risks sacrificing both its auto industry and national security interests. Critics hope that a political shift in 2024 might signal an end to this policy and restore consumer choice.

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