Work begins on EV battery plant in Indonesia

Hyundai Motor Group, LG Energy Solution break ground in Karawang, near capital Jakarta

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AA) – Construction on a $1.1 billion plant to make batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) started in Indonesia’s Karawang New Industry City, near the capital Jakarta, on Monday.

Speaking at a news briefing after the ground-breaking ceremony, Indonesian President Joko Widodo said the plant was the first EV battery facility in Southeast Asia. It is a joint venture by Hyundai Motor Group and LG Energy Solution.

The president said the factory is a manifestation of the government’s seriousness to tap its rich nickel reserves.

Widodo said Indonesia, which has 24% of the world’s total nickel reserves, will become the main producer of nickel-based goods, adding that the factory will attract investment.

He said the government fully supports the development of the battery and electric vehicle industry ecosystem, and continues to roll out structural reforms to ensure ease in doing business.

“Today marks a significant step in starting a new era of the EV battery industry in Indonesia with the establishment of its first battery cell manufacturing plant in the country,” said Jong-hyun Kim, president and CEO of LG Energy Solution.

“Through the joint venture partnership, together, we are now a step closer to establishing the world’s first EV comprehensive supply chain.”

According to a joint statement by the two companies, plant construction will be completed by the first half of 2023, and mass production of battery cells in the new facility is expected to commence in the first half of 2024.

When fully operational, the facility is expected to annually produce 10 gigawatt hours (GWh) of NCMA (nickel-cobalt-manganese-aluminum) lithium-ion battery cells to power more than 150,000 EVs.

The facility will be ready to increase its production capacity up to 30 GWh to meet future growth, the readout said.

*Writing by Rhany Chairunissa Rufinaldo with Anadolu Agency’s Indonesian language services in Jakarta


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