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China's Geely to add US$5 billion battery plant in EV push

BEIJING: Geely said on Monday it would build an electric vehicle battery factory with a planned annual manufacturing capacity of 42 gigawatt hours (GWh) in China's eastern city of Ganzhou, as it expands its EV line-up in the world's biggest car market.

The total investment in the project by Geely's technology arm will be 30 billion yuan (US$4.61 billion), according to a separate statement from the local government. Geely's technology group has previously invested in Ganzhou-based EV battery maker Farasis.

The planned factory comes after Geely announced a flurry of tie-ups in January aimed at turning the automaker into a leading EV contract manufacturer and engineering service provider, as it fights the incursion of EV leader Tesla Inc.

Geely, which owns Volvo Cars and a 9.7per cent stake in Daimler AG, is competing with Great Wall and Nio Inc.

China's government has heavily promoted new energy vehicles (NEVs) - such as battery-powered, plug-in petrol-electric hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell cars - in response to chronic air pollution, spurring interest from technology companies and investors alike.

China forecasts NEVs will make up 20per cent of its annual auto sales by 2025 from around 5per cent in 2020.

(Reporting by Yilei Sun and Tony Munroe; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

Source: Reuters

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