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Chinese investors jostle over Argentine lithium mines

Gold producer Zijin and battery maker CATL join race for key EV material

Argentina holds the world's second-largest identified reserves of lithium, but is currently the third-largest producer.    © Reuters

TOKYO -- Chinese companies have splurged over $1 billion on rights over three lithium mines in Argentina in as many weeks as a race to secure supplies of the "white gold" critical to most production of electric car batteries revs up.

Argentina, which has lagged Chile and Australia in lithium output, has been reforming laws, reducing taxes and improving infrastructure with an eye toward boosting export revenues.

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