The beginning of a “new era” after the meeting at the White House von der Leyen and Biden

US President Joe Biden and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen met Friday to try to finalize a plan that the White House hopes will turn the page in the dispute between the US and the European Union over electric car tax breaks.

Biden and von der Leyen have begun talks between Washington and Brussels on a deal that could increase the use of European minerals critical to electric vehicle batteries, which are eligible for US tax credits thanks to the Biden Clean Energy Act, worth about 352 billion euros. adopted last year. .

Biden, who hosted von der Leyen in the Oval Office, said the alliance for Ukraine heralds a “new era.”

However, tensions are mounting in Europe over the landmark Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) passed by the Biden administration.

Speaking to reporters at the White House after the meeting, von der Leyen said: “Today we agreed that we will work with the most important raw materials that were sourced or processed in the European Union and give them access to the American market as if they were sourced from the American market.”

The inflation-reduction legislation stipulates that if US consumers want to be eligible for a tax credit of up to €7,043 when purchasing an electric vehicle, the electric vehicle’s battery must primarily contain minerals from the US or a country with which Washington has a free trade. agreement. .

In addition, by 2024, 50% of battery components must be manufactured or assembled in North America, and by 2028 this percentage will gradually increase to 100%.

The European Commission, in particular, has responded by launching its own industrial Green Deal plan last month in response to the Biden Act. This measure is expected to make it much easier to push through green industry subsidies and pool projects across the EU.

“I think it is very important for us that… we join forces because it is critical to our future in combating climate change and curbing global warming,” said von der Leyen.

“Therefore, it was important for us that we join forces, that we complement each other, that we support the relevant cleantech industry from both sides,” she added.

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