volkswagen: Volkswagen warns Korean battery row may result in ‘catastrophic’ provide disruption

SEOUL: Volkswagen and Ford stated a US authorized row between South Korean battery makers may disrupt provides of the important thing electrical automobile elements and value US jobs in the course of the Covid-19 outbreak, in keeping with paperwork submitted to a US commerce panel.
The 2 automakers requested the USA Worldwide Commerce Fee (ITC) to permit SK Innovation to fabricate batteries at its proposed US manufacturing unit in Georgia to be used in Ford’s absolutely electrical F-150 and different electrical automobiles, the statements seen by Reuters confirmed.
Final 12 months, South Korean battery maker LG Chem sued small rival SK Innovation over alleged commerce secret theft in the USA, looking for to bar SK from producing battery cells within the US and importing the elements essential to make the cells.
“Any remedial orders ought to search to keep away from collateral injury to SKI’s present clients,” Volkswagen stated in its public curiosity feedback to the ITC in Might.
“To keep away from a catastrophic provide disruption,” the fee ought to permit SK Innovation to fabricate EV batteries within the US facility, Volkswagen stated within the Might assertion.
Ford stated that LG Chem’s assertion that it could exchange SK Innovation as a provider is just not “credible” given EV battery provide shortages and the lengthy improvement interval required for EVs.
LG Chem declined to remark, citing ongoing litigation.
SK Innovation is constructing its first battery plant in Georgia to serve Volkswagen’s EV base in neighboring Tennessee beginning 2022. SK Innovation additionally plans so as to add a second U.S. plant to provide Ford’s electrical pickup vehicles and different fashions.
“The danger to such U.S. jobs is very unacceptable in mild of present financial situations brought on by COVID-19,” Ford stated in its public curiosity feedback to the ITC.
This 12 months, the ITC preliminarily dominated in favor of LG Chem, dealing a blow to SK Innovation. The ITC is about to make a ultimate ruling within the case on October 5.

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