South Korea’s LG Chem to construct $3.2 bn US cathode plant

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South Korea’s LG Chem signed an settlement with the US state of Tennessee to construct a $3.2 billion cathode supplies plant for electrical car batteries, the corporate stated Tuesday.

The plant will probably be able to producing 120,000 tonnes of cathodes a yr by 2027, sufficient to energy 1.2 million pure electrical automobiles, LG Chem stated in a press release.

Overlaying 1.7 million sq. metres (420 acres), the ability would be the “largest of its form in the USA”, it added.

Cathode, a key element in rechargeable batteries, is made up of nickel, lithium and different supplies, and includes round 40 % of the price of electrical car batteries.

Tennessee was the “most suitable option” for LG Chem owing to its “proximity to key clients”, ease of transporting uncooked supplies and energetic authorities cooperation, the corporate stated.

“The Tennessee facility permits LG Chem to proactively tackle the altering dynamics of the worldwide battery materials market and with laws such because the Inflation Discount Act (IRA).”

The IRA, signed into legislation by US President Joe Biden in August, requires sure share of important minerals utilized in EV batteries to be from the USA or its free commerce companions.

Building of the plant will start subsequent yr, with mass manufacturing set to start out in 2025.

The Tennessee web site will “play a important position” in LG Chem’s technique to extend its battery supplies enterprise together with cathode materials fourfold from 5 trillion gained ($3.7 billion) in 2022 to twenty trillion by 2027, the corporate stated.

LG Chem’s shares ended up 0.7 % in Seoul buying and selling Tuesday, as the broader market fell.

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