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Two County Durham businesses and a company in Newcastle are to benefit from a share of £43.7m joint industry and Government funding. The boost supports the development of the latest green auto tech, including electric motorbikes and off-road vehicles.

Northern Lithium, in Durham, will be provided funding to prove the case for a £120 million investment to establish large-scale, sustainable lithium extraction from brines, and the process and supply of this, in the region. Lithium is required to produce rechargeable batteries used in products like mobile phones.

Another Durham business, Weardale Lithium, will receive funding to develop an investment-ready business case for the extraction of lithium from geothermal brines in County Durham. Meanwhile, INEX Microtechnologies in Newcastle will receive funding to develop business plans, to supply the UK automotive industry with Compound Semiconductor devices, used in vehicle electronics.

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