Chile’s government is in talks with the Biden administration over benefits that US companies could access from the Inflation Reduction Act if they were to invest in the mineral-rich Andean nation.

Authorities from Chile have held discussions with President Joe Biden himself as well as US Treasury Department and trade officials, Foreign Affairs Minister Alberto van Klaveren said in an interview. 

President Gabriel Boric’s government is looking to attract foreign capital to help it tap more of the world’s biggest lithium reserves and move further along the battery supply chain as the clean energy transition gathers momentum. The country’s free-trade agreement with the US signals that materials produced in Chile would qualify for incentives to make more electric vehicles in North America.      

“At first, it seems to us that the existing free trade agreement with the United States gives us a very good base to be able to participate in the benefits of the IRA,” van Klaveren said. 

During a visit to Washington earlier this month, Boric said he discussed opportunities that Chile offers in ​​renewable energy, copper and lithium. 

On that same trip, Economy Minister Nicolas Grau met with representatives of EV giant Tesla Inc., Deputy Trade Minister Claudia Sanhueza said in a separate interview on Friday at a summit that Biden hosted in San Francisco for leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. Tesla is preparing to begin operations in Chile.