Posted on : Tuesday 3rd March 2020 10:34 PM
Chinese company CATL, the world's largest maker of car batteries, hopes to invest up to 1.8 billion euros ($2.05 billion) in a planned factory in Germany, encouraged by the strong global appetite for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids.
That figure would be much more than seven times the 240 million euros that Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd. had set aside when it revealed plans last July to build a factory in the German city of Erfurt.
The sharp upsurge mirrors solid demand in overseas markets, the Chinese company said, adding that the investment will drive their global strategy faster.
CATL's investment elevate comes as Beijing pivots toward the E.U. in the midst of an escalating trade conflict with the U.S. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Chancellor Angela Merkel attended the signing ceremony for the new factory last year. Beijing wants to reinforce its economic and technology ties with European countries by supplying parts and cooperation to help fuel autonomous driving and other growth fields.
The planned factory is determined to start out churning out lithium-ion batteries in 2021 for supply to such European players as Volkswagen, Daimler and Groupe PSA.
Automakers are rapidly going electric, with BMW set to launch its electric-vehicle development and production two years earlier than estimated under plans announced Tuesday.