CATL’s German Plant Obtains Approval for Battery Cell Production

Contemporary Amperex Technology Co., Limited (CATL), a global power battery giant based in China, announced on Wednesday that its first overseas factory in Thuringia, Germany, has received the second partial approval for the commissioning of a new plant for battery cell production.

The German CATL plant mainly consists of two parts: G1, an existing building purchased from another company and where cells are assembled to modules, and G2, a newly-built plant where cells will be produced. The approval on Monday was issued to permit cell production of G2.

The factory started construction in 2019 and is scheduled to be put into production by the end of 2022, when 1,500 jobs will be provided to the local area. At present, it is in the stage of equipment installation, and the first batch of batteries are expected to be produced before the end of this year.

The company plans for the factory to have a total investment of 1.8 billion euros ($1.96 billion) with a planned production capacity of 14GWh, which will provide a total of 2,000 local jobs in the future. Located in the heart of Germany, the factory will provide high-quality products and services for major domestic automobile manufacturers, and will help Europe’s comprehensive electrification and energy transformation.

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Chinese media outlet Yicai noticed that the German factory is less than 300 kilometers away from Tesla’s Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg (Giga Berlin), which was officially opened recently, and the construction time of the two factories is not long apart – both in 2019.

On March 22, Giga Berlin officially opened, and delivered the first batch of 30 German-made Model Y models to users. This is Tesla’s first super factory in Europe, producing at least 500,000 Tesla cars and additional batteries every year.

In addition, in order to meet demand for production capacity, as of the end of last year, CATL had laid out 10 production bases in China, including in Ningde and Xiamen in Fujian province, Liyang in Jiangsu province, Xining in Qinghai province, Yibin in Sichuan province, Yichun in Jiangxi province and Lingang in Shanghai. The battery giant said that it plans to increase its investment in overseas bases in the future.