France’s Macron unveils plan to give electric battery industry a jolt
The plan comes after Germany in November set aside 1 billion euros to support battery cell production to reduce dependence on Asian suppliers and shore up jobs at home that may be at risk from the shift away from combustion engines.
Macron said two factories would be built, one each in France and Germany, under a French-German initiative, at a time when their countries’ automakers are waking up to the threats posed from relying on Chinese suppliers in an age of international trade wars.
While some automakers assemble battery packs, Europe has no significant production of their constituent cells – currently dominated by a handful of firms including China’s CATL and Korean rivals LG Chem and Samsung.
PSA Group threw its support behind efforts to create a European manufacturer of EV batteries in March last year. Domestic rival Renault, which sources electric-car batteries from LG Chem, also said it could buy cells from a European supplier as production of electric vehicles ramps up.
“We’re noticing a realization among carmakers that tomorrow’s competition will require a local battery industry,” the French official said.
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