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NewsPage 24.02.2021

Finland combats climate change with sustainable, green battery ecosystem

Never before in history have batteries played such a big role in business – or in society.

Finland is combating climate change in a sustainable manner and the aim towards a zero carbon society with electrification is at the very heart of this effort. This push is further supported by the continued long-term development of a sustainable circular green battery ecosystem in Finland.

Some of the world's leading companies are attracted to the Finnish sustainable battery ecosystem – thanks to Finland's low carbon economy, world-class innovation culture and strong role in the growing European battery value chain.

Finland continues to make a name for herself as a leading sustainable battery ecosystem and is an integral part of the European battery value chain. Finland has a lot of expertise when it comes to the battery ecosystem. This expertise includes; mining, refining of minerals, battery chemical and battery production, applications, charging and recycling, supported by strong process technology and service know-how.

Markku Kivistö, Head of Cleantech at Invest in Finland, Business Finland, points out that Finland is the only EU country where you can find all the key minerals needed to make lithium-ion batteries: cobalt, nickel, lithium and graphite.

"This laid a solid foundation, years ago for a dynamic circular ecosystem that is stimulated by process excellence and an open collaboration attitude."

Global collaboration is key

Finland is creating green solutions to combat climate change, while aiming to be carbon neutral by 2035. Sustainable green batteries present one of these solutions. After all, never before in history has batteries played such a big role in business – or in society in general, for that matter. Fossil fuels are on their way out, zero carbon energy sources are increasing their share together with electrification and storage technologies.

"Finland has a lot to offer in this scenario, because we have – in addition to mineral reserves and their processing – also the zero-carbon electricity available at one of the lowest costs in the EU, together with innovative production technologies to power the future success stories," says Kivistö.

International collaboration with an EU focus is very important for Finland and the Finnish battery ecosystem. Finland and Finnish companies are participating in Important Projects of Common European Interest (IPCEI) driving forward pan-European research and innovation, covering all segments of the Battery Value Chain. Finland promotes the European battery ecosystem along the principles of Circular Economy and fact based sustainability.

Building long term sustainable business ecosystem

Kivistö is convinced that Finland is holding all the right cards for companies and researchers to build and grow their European businesses long term and build the ecosystem further.

"Finland as a sustainable, green battery innovation nation is ranked high in all relevant international comparisons," he says, citing top showings in e.g. the Global Innovation Index, Annual Mining Survey and the UN Sustainable Development Report.

"Finland is known for its commitment to innovation. For those companies operating in Finland and considering establishing operations here, Finland offers a stable, transparent, competitive operative environment in Eurozone with a highly educated workforce that is as tech savvy as they come," says Kivistö.

"Our environmental permitting requirements are strict, transparent and fair, therefore giving companies operating here a solid base."

There are also significant corporate investments on-going in Finland to boost the battery value chain, he adds. "We are having a great interest from world-class companies looking to grow their European businesses. They are viewing Finland as a location for innovation, high-tech production operations as well as business acceleration in European markets."

Research and Innovation for the long-term

Further, Finland may be the perfect country from the R&D perspective. Kivistö says that a lot of the world-class battery research is conducted in Finland and the "research diamonds" are commercialized as a matter of course in collaboration with the industry.

In addition, the "Green Battery Boom" continues to have the full backing of the political decision-makers. On January 24, 2021, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment published the National Battery Strategy. The vision of Finland's battery strategy is to create a low carbon future through batteries and electrification.

"The Finnish way is very much the way of partnerships and collaboration – and with an exciting new industry such as batteries, there's all the more reason to pursue these opportunities, saving the world is good business," says Kivistö.

Want to hear more about opportunities Finland is offering in cleantech?

Markku  Kivistö
Head of Industry, Cleantech
markku.kivisto (at) businessfinland.fi