The Israeli expert in geopolitics, Anat Hochberg Marom, told the Israeli Maariv newspaper that the exposure of the Iranian lithium reservoir could lead to a change in the regional balance of power and give Tehran an unprecedented geopolitical and economic position.
She added that Israel will watch with interest how Tehran will try to take advantage of this discovery in its favor.
According to Maariv newspaper, Iran’s military strength and the renewal of its relations with Arab countries, led by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, in addition to its naval military maneuvers, including with India and Pakistan, constitute a major source of concern for Israel.
It also indicated that Iran has strengthened its strategic relations with Russia, not to mention China, in addition to its close relations with Indonesia, the largest country in the Islamic world.
She pointed out that Iran’s economic status and geopolitical influence expected to greatly enhance soon, and this comes against the backdrop of the discovery of a huge lithium field containing 8.5 million tons – the second largest field in the world after Chile – and is located in Hamedan Province, west of the country.
Thus, not only does this contain 10% of the world’s reserves of “white gold”, which are currently estimated at 89 million tons, but also the discovery – which could save the Iranian economy and ostensibly nullify the effectiveness of the sanctions imposed on it – is a “winning joker”.
According to the Israeli expert, this discovery could have a significant impact on the global energy and mining markets, as well as the global battery and electric car industries.
All of this, in turn, expected to lead to far-reaching changes in the global economy and politics, shifting the center of gravity back to the Middle East.
A senior official in the Iranian Ministry of Industry and Mines said that it is the world’s largest lithium reservoir located outside South America (Argentina, Bolivia and Chile account for 58% of the world’s resources) and the second largest after the Chilean reservoir, which contains 9.2 million tons of lithium.
This metal considered the “The Crown Jewel” due to its enormous value and importance in the production of batteries for various electronic industries, including electric cars, laptops, mobile phones, solar panels and accessories, as well as for energy storage purposes.
According to the Israeli newspaper, this discovery carries economic opportunities and rare and enormous energy for the Iranian government.
It is already clear that although the quality and cost of lithium mining are unknown, retaining about a tenth of the world’s lithium consumption and controlling this strategic raw material will position Iran as an important geopolitical player in world politics and economics.
In light of the worsening climate crisis, the lithium field – along with other energy sources, including nuclear energy – is a source of power, political, economic and energy influence for the Tehran government.
It is expected that all these matters will be benefited from and reflected on the countries of the region, including on the international arena.
Thus, not only is this likely to greatly enhance Iran’s influence, but it will outweigh the influence of the Gulf states, with a focus on the world’s major oil producers, led by Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Rather, this situation may change the balance of power and regional forces in its favor.
Maariv newspaper added that this will strengthen its negotiating position within the framework of various economic and security alliances and agreements, shift the weight between the various players in the Middle East, and divert the focus of attention from the oil market to the “white gold” and lithium mining industries in the region.
Moreover, from a medium to long-term economic perspective, lithium prices, which have risen in recent years, due in part to the steady increase in global demand for this resource as well as lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles, are expected to maintain a similar trend, thus enriching significantly the Iranian economy.
Maariv newspaper said that this discovery constitutes a victory in terms of awareness against the United States and its allies, especially Israel.
It could lead to closer ties with China and additional countries in Southeast Asia, especially Indonesia, and strengthen ties between the Middle East and Asia.
From Tehran’s point of view, the discovery of the field actually increases its ability to maneuver among a large number of players, which could lead to less dependence on the United States and the West.
Maariv newspaper concluded by saying that there is no doubt that Iran, as a country on the nuclear threshold, enjoys political, economic and energy strength, along with boldness, development and high motivation, especially in light of the discovery of the lithium field, which is expected to be very dangerous much more than it’s now.
Last March, Iran announced the discovery of a huge stockpile of lithium, and the official television quoted the official in the Ministry of Industry, Mining and Trade, Muhammad Hadi Ahmadi, as saying, “For the first time in Iran, a stockpile of lithium was discovered in Hamedan, and this stockpile is estimated at” 8.5 million tons”.