China Buys Zimbabwean Lithium Mine


China Natural Resources (cnr) acquired the Williams Minerals lithium mine in Zimbabwe for $1.75 billion, according to a March 3 report in Business Insider Africa. The acquisition of this Zimbabwean mine occurred just after operations in China’s own lithium mines in Yichun, China, were shuttered because of environmental violations. The shutdown of these Chinese mines threatens to slash up to 13 percent of the global supply of lithium. cnr’s acquisition of Williams Minerals will allow the company to increase its lithium supply to China and around the world.

Booming market: Demand for lithium continues to grow in the global market where renewable energy has become increasingly popular. Lithium batteries are essential in the manufacturing of electric vehicles (EVs), which are viewed by many countries as a pathway to climate-friendly, sustainable transportation. China has the biggest EV industry in the world by far: The country sold a whopping 6.8 million EVs in 2022, over eight times more than the United States.

In the worldwide race to go green, Chinese companies have invested billions of dollars in African countries to benefit from their raw material wealth. Africa’s lithium production will likely soar this decade, so expect China to continue its investments in Zimbabwe, which holds Africa’s largest lithium reserves.

The Trumpet has watched China’s foothold in Africa for more than a decade. We wrote in June 2005:

More than any other superpower, the Chinese government is building economic and political influence in economically poor but resource-rich African nations.

Economic superpower: By securing resources like lithium and dominating the global EV market, China is ensuring its position as a great economic power. Bible prophecy forecasts that China will continue to rise to a global superpower. Isaiah 23 prophesies of China as part of a global trade conglomerate. To learn more, read our Trends article “Why the Trumpet Watches the Rise of China as a Superpower.”