(Reuters) - Germany has earmarked 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) to support a consortium looking to produce electric car battery cells and plans to fund a research facility to develop next-generation solid-state batteries, three sources told Reuters.
The measures, expected to be announced by Economy Minister Peter Altmaier next week, are designed to reduce the dependence of German carmakers on Asian battery suppliers and protect German jobs at risk from the shift away from combustion engines.
Below are details of plans to establish electric vehicle (EV) battery plants in Europe:
The Swedish company, headed by a former Tesla executive, aims to build Europe's biggest lithium-ion battery factory, producing 32 gigawatt hours (GWh) of battery cells a year by 2023, rivalling Tesla's U.S. "gigafactory".
It has partnered with German carmaker BMW ahead of plans to raise 1.5 billion euros in debt and equity to build an initial 8 GWh of capacity and has asked for a 400 million euro loan from the European Investment Bank.
Northvolt is also planning a factory in Poland to produce battery systems for energy storage companies and the mining industry. The plant in Gdansk would take cells from the Swedish factory and use them to develop battery systems or modules.
Tesla has said it plans to build three more gigafactories to accompany its first in Nevada, United States. That plant is jointly owned by Panasonic, which is the exclusive battery cell supplier for Tesla's mass-market Model 3 sedan.
The CATL factory will create about 600 jobs and reach a production capacity of 14 gigawatt hours (GWh) by 2022. CATL had shipments of 12 GWh in 2017.
BYD is considering cell production in Europe, an executive told Reuters earlier this year, adding it was not clear where it might be located. The company has two production sites for electric buses in Europe, in Hungary and France.
The factory's planned output of 100,000 battery cells is equivalent to roughly 4 GWh per year which means the plant's capacity is just a fraction of expected future demand in Europe.
GSR CAPITAL http://www.gsrcapital.com/en
Chinese investment firm GSR Capital last year bought Nissan Motor Co's electric vehicle battery business - Automotive Energy Supply Corp - including battery plants in Japan, the U.S. state of Tennessee and England.
The UK plant produces 2 GWh of lithium ion batteries per year for Nissan electric vehicles.
France's Saft, owned by energy company Total produces a range of batteries, including for back-up power and industrial applications, but not for electric vehicles.
The group will focus on advanced high-density lithium-ion and solid-state technology, targeting the market for electric vehicles, railway, marine sectors, among others.
The German-based consortium of 17 companies and research institutions announced plans last year to build two foundries, where lithium-ion battery cells are produced to customers' specifications. It said its two planned factories would have a capacity of 34 GWh by 2028, which would top Northvolt's plans.
Volkswagen's supervisory board is due to discuss its electric car and battery cell strategy at a meeting on Nov. 16. The German carmaker has said in the past that it was studying battery cell production at its plant in Salzgitter.
The company is already assembling batteries in its Kamenz plant in the eastern state of Saxony, but the factory relies on imported battery cells.
Continental also said it was considering making EV batteries using solid-state technology, but for was holding out for now until more advances have been made in the field.
(Reporting by Michael Nienaber in Berlin, Ed Taylor in Frankfurt, Jan C. Schwartz in Hamburg, Esha Vaish in Stockholm, Bate Felix in Paris; editing by David Clarke)
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)