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Hyundai-LG Karawang plant to produce EV batteries in April

Jakarta Globe - March 18, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta – The electric vehicle (EV) battery plant, which lies in the West Javan regency of Karawang, will begin commercial production this April, according to Investment Minister Bahlil Lahadalia.

The plant belongs to the Hyundai LG Indonesia Green Power – a joint venture that brings together South Korean automaker Hyundai, the Seoul-based battery producer LG Energy Solution, and Indonesia Battery Corporation (IBC). Once it begins mass production, Indonesia is expected to be Southeast Asia's first EV battery cell producer.

The first phase of the project, which takes up $1.1 billion in investment, encompasses the production of 10 gigawatt/hour (GWh) EV battery cells. This is equivalent to 32.6 million battery cells, enough to power 150,000 EVs.

"The plant will produce its first 10 GWh worth of EV batteries in April," Bahlil told a press conference in Jakarta on Monday. "We are about to enter the second phase of this EV battery project."

The second phase has Hyundai-LG aiming to upscale the production capacity to 20 GWh, starting in 2025.

The battery cell that the Hyundai LG Indonesia Green Power produces will use nickel, among other minerals. The US Geological Survey 2024 report puts Indonesia's nickel reserves to amount to 24 million metric tons, making it the largest in the world.

Hyundai already has a production plant in Cikarang, West Java. Hyundai Motors Indonesia not long ago revealed they would launch a brand new EV model equipped with domestically produced batteries later this year.

Indonesia wants to build a comprehensive EV battery ecosystem to supercharge its e-mobility ambitions. During the presser, Bahlil commented on the other aspects of the said plan. The minister claimed projects related to cathodes, precursors, and smelters would "begin running this year", although he did not go into more details.

However, he did mention miner Antam's partnership with the Chinese battery giant CATL. Late last year, Antam concluded a series of deals related to the EV battery ecosystem with Hong Kong CBL, which is part of CATL. The cooperation includes the construction of high-pressure acid leach (HPAL) facilities.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/business/hyundailg-karawang-plant-to-produce-ev-batteries-in-apri