SK On to build nickel production facility in Indonesia with Chinese GEM EcoPro

SEOUL, Nov. 25 (Yonhap) — South Korean battery maker SK On Co. joined forces with two battery component makers on Friday by building a facility in Indonesia to produce intermediate nickel products for electric vehicle batteries. announced that it has signed an initial contract. Providing key material.

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed on Thursday between South Korean cathode manufacturer EcoPro Co. and Chinese battery component manufacturer Green Eco-Manufacture (GEM) to manufacture mixed hydroxide precipitates (MHP). was signed to build a factory to Central Sulawesi’s Morowali Industrial Estate, SK On said in a release.

MHP is an intermediate nickel product and is the raw material for nickel sulfate used in the manufacture of battery grade precursors. Precursor refers to specific chemical forms that include nickel, cobalt, manganese, and aluminum before becoming the cathode, one of the key materials in lithium-ion batteries.

The plant aims to produce 30,000 tonnes of high-grade nickel-containing MHP from the third quarter of 2024. This is enough to produce 43 gigawatt hours of EV batteries that can power about 600,000 EVs.

The three companies will also work together to secure nickel oxide ore, a key source of MHP, at the Henjaya mine in the same Indonesian province. Miners can extract cobalt as a by-product from oxidized nickel ore.

At the MHP facility, the three companies are also considering producing nickel sulfate and precursors in South Korea. This will help SK On continue its operations in the US after new US legislation on the EV tax credit is enacted.

The Inflation Control Act, which was signed into law in August, would allow EV batteries to be made with a higher percentage of minerals processed or mined in the United States or elsewhere with free trade agreements with the United States for years. It is obligatory for a long time.South Korea has an FTA with the US

The IRA has urged South Korean automakers and EV battery and battery component producers to accelerate efforts to expand facilities in North America and strengthen partnerships with the United States and partner countries such as Canada and Australia. I was.

SK On is stepping up its efforts to ensure the supply of battery components in the changing industry landscape. The company signed a five-year lithium supply contract for his 57,000 tonnes of critical battery material with his SQM in Chile earlier this month.

SK On also made an equity investment in Australian mining company Lake Resources, signing a 10-year supply contract for 230,000 tonnes of lithium. SK On to build nickel production facility in Indonesia with Chinese GEM EcoPro

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