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SK Innovation to launch car battery biz in China

SK Innovation, the holding company of SK Group’s energy-related businesses, said Monday it will enter the Chinese electric-car battery market by setting up a joint venture in Beijing by June this year with its two state-run Chinese partners Beijing Automotive Industry Holding and Beijing Electronics Holding.

For this plan, the company’s top management, including SK Holdings vice chairman Chey Jae-won, signed an investment letter of intent with their Chinese counterparts on Monday in Beijing.

The establishment of a joint entity in China is part of SK Innovation’s efforts to build its presence in the global EV battery market, the company said.

SK Innovation will exclusively provide the joint venture with EV battery packs, which are produced at its plant in Seosan, South Chungcheong Province, until the joint venture constructs its own production line.

The Seosan plant, established in 2012, is the company’s second EV battery plant, with a capacity to supply 200-megawatt-hour batteries for 10,000 electric cars or about 20,000 hybrid cars annually.