The Battery Boom Has Created a New Lithium Superpower in China

With a ruined 13th Century castle, the Irish town of Carlow is an unlikely staging post in the super-charged rise of a key player in China’s push to dominate the global electric-vehicle revolution.

Ganfeng Lithium Co. sent a team to the town — a 90-minute drive southwest of Dublin — in 2013, shuttling between prospective lithium deposits dotted through the verdant countryside. It was part of their company’s first foray outside China amid a drive to boost production of key materials needed to make rechargeable batteries.

With projects and partnerships now spanning South America to Australia, Ganfeng is aiming to use proceeds from a share sale in Hong Kong this week to continue a growth spree that’s forecast to make it the industry’s second-largest producer from this year.

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