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GM, SDI will build $3 billion battery manufacturing plant in Indiana


By David Shepardson

(Reuters) -General Motors and Samsung SDI will build a more than $3 billion EV battery cell plant in Indiana scheduled to begin operations in 2026, creating 1,700 jobs, the state’s governor said Tuesday.

The companies said in April they would invest more than $3 billion to build a joint venture EV battery manufacturing plant in the U.S. but did not name a location.

Reuters reported in January that GM had opted not to move forward with building a fourth U.S. battery plant with LG Energy Solution in Indiana, but said GM could still pick Indiana for a battery plant with another partner.

The joint GM and Samsung SDI plant near New Carlisle, Indiana aims to have an annual production capacity of 30 gigawatt hours (GWh). The plant will produce high-nickel prismatic and cylindrical battery cells.

Samsung SDI CEO Yoonho Choi said in a statement “Securing Indiana as a strong foothold together with GM, Samsung SDI will supply products featuring the highest level of safety and quality in a bid to help the U.S. move forward to an era of electric vehicles.”

The U.S. Energy Department finalized a $2.5 billion loan to the GM-LG Energy Ultium Cells LLC joint venture late last year. The companies are building a $2.6 billion plant in Michigan, set to open in 2024 after opening a plant in Ohio and are building another in Tennessee.

GM expects to build 400,000 electric vehicles (EVs) in North America from 2022 through mid-2024 and increase capacity to 1 million units annually in North America in 2025. Reuters reported in April GM is considering building at least two additional EV plants on the top of the first four to meet future EV demand.

United Auto Workers President Shawn Fain and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders in April blasted the GM LG Ohio JV for paying workers much less than assembly plant employees even though it benefits from hefty U.S. government tax credits.

The UAW has not yet endorsed President Joe Biden for a second term, citing concerns about EV policies.

Biden, during a visit to Samsung in South Korea last year, urged companies to “enter into partnerships” with “American union members”, saying JVs “that manufacture electric vehicle batteries would be made stronger by collective bargaining relationships” with U.S. unions.

(Reporting by David Shepardson, Editing by Louise Heavens and David Evans)

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