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MOTIE announces Energy Innovation Startup Development Measures 2022-09-15

Trade, Industry and Energy Minister Lee Chang-yang visited the vanadium ion battery (VIB)-based electric vehicle (EV) charging station demonstration site operated by Standard Energy, and presided the Energy Innovation Business Roundtable at Korea Technology Center in Seoul, where he announced the Ministry’s Energy Innovation Startup Development Measures (hereinafter “Development Measures”).

Standard Energy, located in Daejeon, is a company recognized for its VIB technology with improved fire safety, battery life and charging speed, and is considered a gamechanger in the race for larger storage capacity and longer lifecycle.

The company’s innovative technology has earned investments worth KRW 90 billion from investors like Lotte Chemical and Softbank Ventures, and has been selected as the “Technology Pioneer” of 2021 by the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The Energy Development Measures encompass SMEs, startups and middle-market companies that have the technology and services for energy innovation, and are part of Korea’s national agenda for creating new energy markets and industries.

The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Energy (MOTIE) aims to develop 5,000 energy startups and 10 pre-unicorn companies by 2030 through investment expansion, creation of new markets and infrastructure establishment.

The Development Measures are largely three-fold:

One, business financing for promising energy innovation startups are to be expanded, and post-R&D support will be strengthened. A joint public-private fund worth 600 billion won focusing on promising energy innovation startups will spearhead the movement.

Two, energy innovation startups will be given assistance through public procurement, regulatory enhancement and overseas market penetration support. Outstanding R&D achievements are to be designated as “priority development items” and selected for purchases by energy public companies. Deregulation efforts will also speed up the commercialization process.

Three, sustainable innovation growth foundations will be fostered for energy innovation startups’ growth acceleration and maximum economic outcome. This entails the nurturing of quality technical workforce and people-to-people exchange between local universities, with the goal of training up 20,000 professionals by 2030.

At the business roundtable, Minister Lee emphasized that the Ministry is willing to make decisive moves in regulatory improvement and R&D support. He added that “continuous efforts will be made to devise effective policies through close communication with innovation-seeking industries.”