Galp is preparing to transform the Matosinhos oil products refinery into a lithium refinery for some time and may have already established an agreement with the Swedish company Northvolt for the supply of refined lithium in Portugal and delivered by ship from the port of Leixões.
There may also be a joint application by the two companies, with the possibility of adding a third (mining exploration), to the lithium tender, that the Portuguese government has already announced to be held until September 2021, with 11 areas of exploration.
A source close to the process revealed to ECO that in the first half of 2020 the president of AICEP went to Stockholm to meet with the heads of Northvolt, who in turn were in Portugal more recently to speak with Galp and the Portuguese government, which is aware of this whole process. Neither Galp nor Northvolt made any statements.
On Monday, the Minister for the Environment and Climate Action, Matos Fernandes, revealed his desire for Galp’s refinery to be part of the energy transition. ECO knows that one of the options may be the lithium refining which will kick off in the next few years in the country’s north. “The door is open for that great industrial asset that exists there to be made profitable […] with industrial projects other than oil refining,” said the minister, underlining: “Portugal will have a lithium refinery.”