The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 1.8% in afternoon trading on Wednesday after the White House said President Donald Trump threatened to “cut off” imports of the fuel-efficient, carbon-neutral, lithium-ion battery technology from U.K. manufacturers.
The move came amid growing speculation the Trump administration may move to limit imports of U.B.C. solar panel maker Li-ion after it agreed to purchase the U.k.’s BrightSource battery unit.
In an interview with CNBC, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump was “very concerned” about a U.C.-China trade agreement that is expected to become law next week.
“This is a trade agreement, and we will see what the president’s thinking on that.
But we are very concerned about what the U.,C.U. is doing in the negotiations, and that’s a concern of mine,” Sanders said.
Li-Ion is a type of lithium-air battery that has proven very durable and can store energy for longer periods of time, and has a wide range of applications, from the transportation sector to electric vehicles.
In addition to being the technology of choice for electric vehicles, the battery also is a major part of Li-Fi, the technology that powers Wi-Fi networks.
Sanders said she couldn’t comment on what the President was doing with the technology.
Earlier Wednesday, the International Energy Agency estimated that Li-IIa could replace about 90% of all existing batteries by 2030.
The IEA said the technology has a “strong potential” to be used in a range of energy applications, including wind turbines, autonomous vehicles and power generation.
The battery has been a top priority for China since President Xi Jinping came to power in late 2012, when the government pledged to promote the technology in the wake of the Fukushima disaster.
In September, China signed a deal with the U,B.K.-based European company SolarCity to build a battery plant in Germany.
In August, the company announced plans to sell batteries to China’s state-owned electric car manufacturer, BYD.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the General Assembly of the United Nations in October that Li battery was among the technologies that should be considered for use in the global electric vehicle market.
Guterre said that “China will continue to play a leading role” in developing the technology and that the U-B.k.-based companies could “be the first to market.”
Li-IIIa batteries are typically made of a solid lithium alloy with a lithium ion battery cell.
The lithium-Ions in Li-IVa batteries, on the other hand, are more abundant, and have higher energy densities.
Li Ia and Li IIa are both lithium ion batteries with the added benefit of greater energy density.
U-China, China’s top auto manufacturer, has announced plans for a battery factory in Germany, which would be the first of its kind in the world.
China’s government has also pledged to set up a Li-TEC research and development center, and to promote Li-B batteries, which are more energy efficient and cheaper.
In June, the U.-China Business Council, an industry group, announced that the two nations had reached a “road map” to jointly develop the Li-iva and the Li I battery technologies.
The plan calls for jointly developing the technologies for electric vehicle manufacturing and energy storage and transportation.
Earlier this month, the China National Energy Administration said it had signed a memorandum of understanding with U.M.-based Tesla Motors to explore the feasibility of a joint research and deployment of Li I and Li IV batteries in China.
Earlier in the year, U.U.-China ties had soured, and U.A.-U.S.-China relations have taken a downturn.
On Oct. 20, President Donald J. Trump signed an executive order that called for a suspension of U.-B.N.-U-China economic and trade cooperation, and for U.H.-U.-B.-U to begin to close a $1.9 billion trade deficit.
The U.W.-China Trade Agreement, which was struck between the two countries in January 2018, was a compromise that put a halt to trade deficits and imposed reciprocal tariffs on Chinese goods.
In a statement, the Trump Administration said the decision to cancel the agreement was based on concerns about trade barriers in the U