Analysts are expecting demand for electric vehicles to boom in the coming decades — and fund manager Steven Glass says there’s one related component with “fantastic” longer-term prospects. It’s copper: a critical component in electric vehicles, used in batteries, wiring, charging points and more. Glass’ call comes at a tough time for the metal. Benchmark prices for copper closed at $8,258 a ton on the London Metal Exchange (LME) on Thursday, down around 20% since the start of April. It marks the metal’s biggest quarterly drop since the first quarter of 2011. Copper prices are widely viewed as a gauge of global economic health, as it’s used extensively in manufacturing — and there are fears that rising interest rates and a potential recession could further curtail demand for the metal. But Glass, managing director at Pella Fund Management, is unperturbed by the short-term negativity surrounding the metal. ‘We can make a lot of money from that’ There will be a “supply crunch” for copper, according to Glass, given the lack of investment in the sector over the past decade and its growing use in EVs. “We don’t have a massive position in copper, but really the long-term fundamentals for copper is fantastic and really it’s driven by [electric vehicles] and renewable energy,” he told CNBC “Squawk Box Asia” on Thursday. “An EV typically uses four times the amount of copper compared to an internal combustion vehicle. We think, over the long-term, copper is in a very, very strong position. And we think we can make a lot of money from that given the growth of EVs,” Glass added. Read more ‘Strong growth ahead’: Bank names its top EV battery stocks, giving one over 60% upside Goldman says buy these global stocks to play $900 billion EV opportunity — names one with 50% upside Goldman says buy the pullback in oil and other commodities Demand for the metal will also be supported by the European Union’s ban on the sale of fossil-fuel vehicles by 2035, he said, as well as further economic stimulus in China — a scenario which Glass believes “is likely.” Stock picks Glass’s picks to play a bounceback in copper are Chilean copper mining firm Antofagasta and Swedish industrial metal firm Boliden . “With Antofagasta currently trading on an 8% FCF [free cash flow] yield, and Boliden on a 14% FCF, both companies look attractively valued,” Glass said. Free cash flow — cash generated by a business after accounting for operating and capital expenditure — is viewed as a measure of financial health and profitability. It is an important measure of the amount of capital that can be returned to shareholders via dividends and/or buybacks.