SEOUL, June 15 South Korea's LG Chem Ltd
said it has secured orders to supply electric
vehicle (EV) batteries to China's SAIC Motor Corp
and Qoros, betting on the world's biggest car market to revive
the sluggish growth of EVs globally.
LG Chem did not disclose details of the deals, but said the
contracts would increase the total number of its Chinese
customers to four, which have ordered batteries for more than
100,000 EV vehicles and would lead to hundreds of millions of
dollars in revenue once production begins.
LG Chem, which has factories in the United States and Korea,
also said it plans to build a joint venture in China in the
second half of this year to produce EV batteries to cope with
growing demand in the region.
"We are in the final process of deciding our JV partner in
China and once the decision is made, we plan to pick the site
after discussions," LG Chem said in a statement.
The move comes as automakers are rushing to introduce new
EVs in China, driven by the government's plan to put 500,000 EVs
on the road by 2015 and 5 million by 2020.
LG Chem made headlines in 2009 by winning a supply deal for
General Motors' Volt EVs, followed by a flurry of deals
with Renault and other automakers. But sales of many
EVs have fail to live up to their expectations, pushing LG
Chem's car battery business in the red.
(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Matt Driskill)