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Hyundai Motor, LG Chem considering EV battery joint venture in Indonesia: source
[SEOUL] South Korea's Hyundai Motor Group and LG Chem are considering establishing an electric vehicle (EV) battery cell manufacturing joint venture in Indonesia, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Tuesday.
The size of investment or capacity have not been decided, said the person, declining to be identified as discussions are private.
Global automakers are moving to secure electric-vehicle batteries in anticipation of a rise in EV sales due to government subsidies and quotas worldwide seeking to cut carbon emissions.
In recent years, battery maker LG Chem has set up separate ventures with both General Motors and Geely Automobile.
LG Group chairman Koo Kwang-mo met Hyundai Motor Group executive vice-chairman Euisun Chung on Monday to discuss cooperation in EV batteries, including future battery technology.
LG Chem and Hyundai Motor Group confirmed the meeting but said nothing has been decided concerning a potential venture.
"Hyundai Motor Group is collaborating with LG Chem on various projects. However, no concrete discussion has been made on a battery joint venture in Indonesia," Hyundai said in a statement to Reuters.
A battery cell joint venture would be the first for Hyundai, widely viewed as a relative latecomer to the EV market. The company is trying to challenge the dominance of Toyota in Indonesia with its upcoming car factory there.
"Indonesia is committed to promoting the EV industry, but it is not yet ready in terms of charging infrastructure and consumers’ purchasing power. A battery joint venture is likely to be a mid- or longer-term plan," analyst Lee Jae-il at Eugene Investment & Securities, said.
The head of Indonesia's investment board (BKPM) and a spokesperson to Indonesia’s Coordinating Ministry of Maritime and Investment Affairs have not responded to Reuters' requests for comment.